CITY OF SAN FERNANDO — Two barangay chairmen of Apalit town survived an ambush at about 4:15 p.m Wednesday in Minalin town after attending a peace covenant among candidates in local elections in Pampanga.
Vice Gov. Dennis Pineda identified the barangay chairmen as Renato Pacia of Barangay Sampaloc and Nic Gardener of Barangay San Vicente both in Apalit. Contrary to initial reports reaching him, however, Pacia was unhurt, but Gardener was reported to be in critical condition.
He said the two were in a Honda car, driven by Gardener, when they were fired at by still unidentifi ed suspects on board a black Fortuner which overtook them along the Sto. Tomas- Minalin road.
“What is most deplorable and saddening is that the perpetrators attacked just after the signing of a peace covenant at the Metropolitan Cathedral among gubernatorial candidates. Barangay captains Pacia and Gardener came to meet with me after the signing. Both are first termer officials. Apalit mayoralty candidate Jun Tetangco, their friend, said the two do not have enemies or have intimated that they have been receiving threats whatsoever,” said Pineda, who is running for governor in place of his mother, current Gov Lilia Pineda.
He strongly condemned the incident.
He said that “as vice governor of Pampanga, I have requested the police to investigate the incident and bring the attackers behind bars. I have also asked the Commission on Elections to order the police to up their security efforts. I hope this incident does not diminish our trust in the electoral process.
“ Pineda also appealed for prayers for the well being of Gardener and Pacia.