BAYOMBONG, Nueva Vizcaya: Shortly after celebrating a Christmas party with Capitol employees on Monday in Tuguegarao City, Cagayan Governor Alvaro Antonio was arrested for multiple attempted murder.
The arrest stemmed from the complaint filed by Malacañang adviser Manuel Mamba who alleged that Antonio and his two aides fired at his convoy of four vehicles during the May 2013 elections.
Antonio denied the allegations, saying he was at his residence when the incident happened.
“This is a mere excuse from the Mambas for their defeat in the last elections,” Antonio said as he called on his supporters to donate P1 each to help him raise the funds needed to post bail.
Mamba served three terms as a Representative for the 3rd District of Cagayan. He is currently the presidential legislative liaison officer and Liberal Party (LP) chairman for Cagayan province.
In filing the complaint, Mamba alleged that he personally saw the governor firing an AK-47 rifle from the town hall and towards the convoy, which, at that time, was passing through the governor’s hometown in Alcala at about 2 p.m. of May 13, 2013.
Mamba’s group was reportedly monitoring the conduct of election and was heading to Aparri from Tuguegarao City when they were attacked. Mamba’s brother, three-term Tuao town Mayor William Mamba of the Liberal Party (LP), ran but lost to re-electionist Antonio in the race for governor. In their hometown, the Mambas, however, retained the mayoralty post in Tuao town. Another brother, Antonio, also overwhelmingly won the post in the 2010 elections.
Antonio, on the other hand, belongs to the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) allied with the Team Cagayan of Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile.
After the arrest, Antonio appealed to Cagayanons to spare him a peso each for his P10,000 bail and as a protest to the multiple attempted murder case heaped against him.
Cris Barcena, Antonio’s spokesman, said the Court already down- graded Mamba’s charged to illegal discharge of firearm, a ruling that is being contested by Mamba.