Filipino activist leader survives assassination attempt

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Monday, January 29, 2007

An officer of the regional chapter of Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) in Tacloban City, Leyte survived an assassination attempt last Saturday January 27 at around 8 o'clock in the evening.

Flor Acbo, 54, was believed to be the primary target of unidentified motorcycle-riding men who fired shots right in front of the Bayan's regional office in Eastern Visayas and wounded the leg of a man nearby.

Acbo said in an interview that the incident failed to douse his conviction, and condemned the "cowardly attempt on his life".

"It just shows how effective my work in exposing anomalies in government as well the abuses being perpetrated by the military. Instead of being cowed, this would strengthen my conviction to fight for the rights of the oppressed," he proudly voiced out.

The police have yet to complete their investigation.

Acbo, 54, is Bayan regional information officer for two years now.

He said he and his friend Bobby Bongcaras had just alighted from a passenger jeepney, a few meters from his house when one of two men riding a motorcycle fired at them.

According to a report, Acbo and Bongcaras ran towards their respective houses, while the two assailants fled towards the downtown area of this city.

The bystander who was hit was identified as Eric de Guzman, 27, also a resident of the same area. De Guzman, who was hit on his left foot, was brought to the Eastern Visayas Regional Medical Center for treatment, report said.

Police Superintendent Anaclito Limbo, Tacloban City police chief, said the gunman used a .45 caliber pistol. The police were investigating the shooting as of press time, Limbo was quoted saying.

Limbo said they had yet to determine whether the attempt to kill Acbo could be due to his involvement with Bayan.

Acbo ran and lost as mayor of Pinabacdao town in Samar during the 1988 elections under the banner Partido ng Bayan.

He also worked as the town's sanitary inspector and was once connected with the Commission on Population regional office.