Only P1 million was released by the Office of the President as reward for the tipsters who relayed information to authorities leading to the killing of four Abu Sayyaf bandits in Clarin last month, said an Army official.
According to Gen. Arnulfo Matanguihan, commander of the Philippine Army’s 402nd Infantry Brigade, the amount was shared among at least three informants including a habal-habal driver tipster.
The bounty released was only for the killing of militant Joselito Melloria who was pinpointed by the informants, said Matanguihan.
Melloria and three other Abu Sayyaf fighters were gunned down in Clarin town on April 22 following the reports made by the informants.
However, the Army general pointed out that the three other slain extremists were located through military intelligence.
Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) officials had been clarifying the reward system for informants since reports indicating that the habal-habal driver tipster in Clarin only received P450,000 surfaced.
For his part, AFP Central Command assistant chief of the unified staff for Civil Military Operations Col. Medel Aguilar said that there were several witnesses including government officials during the turnover of the reward to informants.
According to Aguilar, the awarding of the money was kept from the general public by barring media coverage for security purposes, particularly for the protection of the informants.
The information relayed by the tipsters were also quantified and money given for the valid reports were commensurate their importance to the capture of the Abu Sayyaf, he said.
Meanwhile, a formal request addressed to Malacañang for the release of funds for the supposed reward of the informant who directed authorities to the location of Abu Saad in Tubigon has been filed, said Matanguihan.
Kiram was arrested in Barangay Tan-awan, Tubigon on Thursday last week after he was spotted by residents asking for food in said village.
He was gunned by police authorities in Tagbilaran City during the next day after allegedly escaping as he was being transported to a jail facility and resisting arrest. (Allen Doydora)