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NBI, PNP probe murder of Capitol consultant

BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN

The Philippine flag at the provincial Capitol grounds in Bacolod City was flown at half-mast yesterday as the provincial government mourns the killing of consultant Marton Cui Monday night* Capitol PIO photo

The National Bureau of Investigation has been asked to investigate the assassination of Capitol consultant, Mariano Antonio “Marton” Cui, as the Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office activated its Special Investigation Task Group to speed up the probe and solve the case.

“Hopefully, with two investigations going on, we will be able to determine, at the very least, who the triggerman was, and the person behind the incident,” Governor Jose Lacson, who was shocked by the killing of Cui, said yesterday.

Cui succumbed to two gunshot wounds in his neck, after he was shot at long-range while he was about to board his vehicle Monday night, in front of his office at Emerald Arcade building, in Brgy. Palampas, San Carlos City, P/Lt. Abegael Donasco, deputy spokesperson of the NOCPPO, said.

Donasco said they cannot establish yet if the assassination of Cui was carried out by a “sniper” because the investigation is still ongoing.

Cui, who also served as chief of staff of former Rep. Julio Ledesma IV (Neg. Occ., 1st District), before his consultancy job at the Capitol, was declared dead on arrival at the San Carlos City Hospital, the police said.

P/Lt. Ruby Aurita, San Carlos City deputy police chief, said the suspect/s may have been waiting for Cui to come out of his office.

But the police failed to recover any spent shell at the crime scene, that is about 200 meters away from the San Carlos City Hall.

Cui was added to the list of numerous victims of fatal shooting incidents in Negros Occidental in the past several months, majority of those remaining unsolved, with no suspects ever arrested.

“I think the only justice that we can give to his family is to find out who is the triggerman, who is behind it, and why it was necessary to take the life of Marton,” Lacson said.

He described Cui as a fine gentleman and a mild-mannered individual, and he cannot understand why someone would do him harm, Lacson said.

As a loyal and trusted man of Ledesma, Lacson said that Cui was a pillar of strength of their political group in the 1st district of Negros Occidental.

He preferred to work behind the scenes, not wanting any credit for himself, Lacson added.

“I really hope that, unlike similar incidents in the past, the triggerman, the mastermind, and the reason why this was done, can be established,” the governor said. “If we speak of confidence, it is very low. But although confidence is not high, we trust the authorities undertaking the investigations,” he added. Lacson admitted that he did not take seriously the reports that Cui, elder brother of former Sangguniang Panlalawigan Board Member Mark Cui, who is now a councilor of San Carlos City, will run as mayor of Toboso in next year’s elections.*

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