AN OFFICIAL from the Naval Forces Eastern Mindanao Command (NFEM) said on Tuesday that the military and naval operation has been working non-stop to locate and rescue the three foreign nationals and one Filipina who were abducted by the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) inside a luxury resort in Samal Island last September.
Commodore Elson Aguilar, newly-installed commander of the NFEM, said they are still coordinating with their counterparts in the Western Mindanao Command (Westmincom) for development in the on-going operations in Sulu where the four hostages are believed to be held in captive.
"Tuloy-tuloy pa rin ang operations natin," Aquilar told reporters during the special press conference held Tuesday morning at The Royal Mandaya Hotel.
"We are already intensifying our intelligence system in order to prevent the abduction incident from happening again."
Aguilar just assumed as commander of NFEM last December 7, replacing Commodore Rafael Mariano who promoted and assigned to another command.
Aguilar also assured the public that the NFEM have enough sea assets that could cover the area of Davao Region.
"Meron naman tayong mga sea assets nguni’t yung isa nga lang ay aalis muna dahil magu-undergo ng maintainance," Aguilar said.
He also said that they have already enhanced their area of coverage to preven the similar kidnapping scenario from happening again.
Aguilar also identified the sea assets that NFEM have including two patrol craft escort (PCEs), three PGs, two VFs, and other rubber boats.
It can be recalled that 11 armed members of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) on board two motorboats stormed inside the Holiday Ocean View Resort last September 21, and forcibly abducted four persons identified as Kjartan Sekkingstad, a Norwegian national and operations manager of Holiday Ocean View; John Ridsel and Robert Hall, both Canadian nationals; and Tess, Hall's live-in partner. (KRP)