Jolo Cathedral bombing suspect escapes arrest in Sulu

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – Alias Kamah, one of the suspects behind the Jolo Cathedral bombing, escaped arrest on Tuesday night, January 29.

A joint police and military team found the man believed to be Kamah with two companions in Kalimayan Village, Barangay Latih in Patikul town, Sulu, at around 6:30 pm.

One of the companions, identified as 62-year-old Ommal Yusop, drew out his gun and fired at the cops, forcing the uniformed men to retaliate and kill him.

Kamah has been identified as a member of the Ajang-Ajang faction of the Abu Sayyaf Group and the brother of fallen bandit leader Surakah Ingog, an alleged bombmaker slain in Sulu in August 2018.

Amid the encounter, the man suspected to be Kamah and his other companion were able to escape. Cops continue with their manhunt, knowing that the suspect is still in the Sulu archipelago. Patikul is a neighboring town of provincial capital Jolo.

The man believed to be Kamah was spotted near the Jolo Cathedral during the bombing on Sunday, January 27, which left at least 23 dead and 109 wounded. The death toll rose on February 4. (WATCH: Outside Jolo Cathedral during the bombing)

Police recovered a caliber .45 pistol, an empty bullet shell, 5 caliber .45 live ammunition, and one magazine from the area. –

Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers security, crime, and the city of Manila for Rappler. He was chosen as a Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs.