Three people died in a shooting at a university graduation ceremony in the capital region of the Philippines on Sunday, including a former mayor from the country’s volatile south, police said.
Quezon City Police Chief Remus Medina said the shooting appears to have been an assassination attempt on Rose Furigay, the former mayor of the city of South Lamitan.
The suspect, who was wounded in a shootout with a campus security officer and arrested after a chase, is now in custody and under questioning, Medina told reporters.
“He looks like a determined assassin,” Medina said, adding that he was found with two pistols.
Quezon is part of the Manila Capital Region, an urban sprawl of 16 cities with a population of more than 13 million.
Furigay was shot while she was about to attend her daughter’s law school graduation from Ateneo de Manila University, one of the most prestigious in the country, Medina said.
The suspect, who had no relatives at graduation, was also from the town of Lamitan in Basilan province, a stronghold of Abu Sayyaf, a pro-Islamist extremist group known for banditry and kidnappings.
The other two killed were a campus security guard and an unidentified man, police said.
Ateneo canceled the graduation ceremony after filming.
Shootings occur sporadically in the Southeast Asian nation, with owners requiring a permit to carry guns in public.
Private security officers in the Philippines carry either handguns or shotguns, and firearms are a common sight in malls, offices, banks, restaurants, and even schools.
“We commit our law enforcement agencies to thoroughly and expeditiously investigating these killings and bringing all involved to justice,” Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said in a statement.
https://www.nbcnews.com/news/world/three-dead-graduation-shooting-philippines-university-rcna39725 Three dead in Philippine university graduation shooting