By Arwen Pascua
MANILA — The Philippine National Police (PNP) is conducting a thorough investigation on the latest incident of a bus explosion in Aleosan, Cotabato, killing a five-year-old boy and wounding six innocent passengers.
The explosion occurred a little past 8 a.m. on Tuesday, January 11, 2022.
According to the initial reports from the Aleosan Municipal Police Station, an unidentified type of explosive detonated at the rear portion of a Mindanao Star bus with body number 1551.
The victims were immediately rushed to the nearest hospital for medical treatment.
The fatality was identified as Benjamin Solaiman while the six hurt are Rodolfo R. Castillo, a 67-year-old senior citizen; Masid Benjamin,25; Haron Solaiman, 24; Yushra Solaiman, 3; Lester Alkane Bautista, 17; and the youngest among them is Haron Solaiman Jr., 5 months old.
Witnesses disclosed that an unidentified suspect was carrying baggage when he boarded the bus unit at Kabacan, Cotabato.
He immediately disembarked leaving his baggage upon reaching Pikit, Cotabato.
“We continue to monitor the condition of the blast victims. The PNP will get to the bottom of this. This bloody incident bears clear signs of a possible terror attack. We condemn violence in all forms,” PNP Chief General Dionardo Carlos said.
Investigators are also looking into the possibility of extortion and terror attack from a recent operation conducted by the Police Regional Office at Pikit, Cotabato. (ai/mtvn)