AT LEAST 18 individuals, including six minors and a pregnant woman, were wounded when a bomb exploded in front of a restaurant along the national highway of Isulan, Sultan Kudarat at around 3 p.m. Wednesday, April 3.
Major Arvin Encinas, 6th Infantry (Kampilan) Division spokesman, confirmed that an improvised explosive device (IED) went off at Carlito’s Place Restaurant in Barangay Calawag Isulan, Sultan Kudarat.
Based on the report of the Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction Management (MDDRMC) of Isualan, as of 5:19 p.m., 18 have been so far recorded who sustained injuries and were rushed to different hospitals.
The pregnant woman was identified as Norhani Mamasalagat, 26 from Bagumbayan.
Encinas said a lockdown has been implemented in the area following the incident and Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) experts were sent to check the bomb site to ensure the safety and security of the public.
Though they have not established yet the motive of the incident since a joint investigation is still ongoing, they are not discounting the possibility that it might have been perpetrated by the Daesh-inspired terrorist group Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) and other terrorist groups.
It can be recalled that last year, four people were killed in two bomb explosions in Isulan, while the municipality was celebrating its 61st founding anniversary.
Security measures have since been beefed up.
Encinas said they have heightened their security measures to prevent the town from being a target by lawless elements. Additional troops were likewise deployed in coordination with their police counterparts and the local government unit.
Asked if the incident was connected to the upcoming elections in May, he said they have no information yet.