Cabinet Secretary Leoncio Evasco, Jr. informed Malacanang on the controversy over the release of the supposedly P1 million per head cash reward to civilians who provide information leading to the arrest or killing of Abu Sayyaf members who attempted to do their operations in the province.
Amidst public speculations on the release of the cash reward. Sec. Evasco was called by the Chronicle yesterday to inform Pres. Rodrigo Duterte on how his pronounced P1 million per head reward was implemented by the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP)
Netizens questioned why of the four killed Abu Sayyaf members, only P1 million cash reward was released, instead of P4 million if the President’s pronouncement has to be followed.
Pres. Duterte during his visit here a week after the Inabanga incident happened categorically said that the office of the President will release the cash reward of P1 million per head of the terrorists once captured or killed.
Major Gen. Oscar Lactao, commanding officer of the Central Command made the formal turnover of the P1 million cash reward to the informants who led to the killing of Joselito Melloria, the local guide of the terrorists group who is a native of Inabanga town in the presence of Gov. Edgar Chatto and other military officials with two civilian witnesses.
Reports revealed the main informant who is reportedly a habal-habal driver received P450,000 since the balance of the P1 million was divided from among other informants.
Col. Arnulfo Matanguihan, commander of the 302nd Philippine Army brigade explained the P1 million released was for the civilians whose information directly led to Melloria’s killing.
He explained that after the killing of Melloria , the succeeding operations at nightfall of the same day was based on military intelligence and not on any civilian information. He explained that because the killing of the 3 other Abu Sayyaf members was not due to civilians’ information, then it will not warrant the release of any cash reward for the killing of three terrorists.
“The night time operations after Melloria was killed, were based on intelligence network of the military, thus will not be entitled to a cash reward,” Matanguihan told the media during an ambush interview at the Bohol Tropics yesterday afternoon. He met with the town mayors and explained regarding the cash rewards.
Secretary Evasco said until 11 o’clock last night, the information relayed to the Palace has not been given an official statement by Pres. Duterte.
“Once Ill get the President’s reaction on such sensitive issue as cash reward , I will inform the public during today’s Inyong Alagad of station dyRD,” Sec. Evasco said.