FEARING the "shoot on sight" order against him, Albuera, Leyte Mayor Rolando Espinosa has surrendered to police forces within the 24-hour window provided to him and his son by President Rodrigo Duterte, a Malacañang official announced on Tuesday.
In a statement, presidential spokesperson Ernesto Abella said that Espinosa is now under the custody of Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa.
However, "[t]he son, Kerwin, is still at large," Abella noted.
In a press conference in Camp Crame, Dela Rosa confirmed that the elder Espinosa came to him personally at around 4 a.m. on Tuesday. He said Espinosa does not know the whereabouts of his son.
For this, Dela Rosa warned Kerwin to surrender or else police will hunt him down.
"Kung ako sayo Kerwin sumuko ka na or else die,"said Dela Rosa.
(Video by Al Padilla/Sunnex)
Mayor cannot be detained
Mayor Espinosa, the PNP chief said, will not be detained as there is no standing arrest warrant against him. Instead, he will be turned over to the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group for further questioning.
Dela Rosa said for now, Espinosa may go back to his province and return to his function as the municipal mayor until.
Espinosa for his part promised that he will help the authorities in tracking down his son as well as in curbing illegal drug activities in his area.
"Kung papatayin namin ang anak mo pag naaresto at lumaban okay lang?" asked Dela Rosa.
"Opo, okay lang," Espinosa responded.
The mayor maintained that he is not involved in any illegal drugs activities and said he is willing to undergo drug test.
On Monday night, President Rodrigo Duterte demanded the surrender of Espinosa and his son "on the grounds of drug-trafficking and coddling." (With reports from Third Anne Peralta-Malonzo/Sunnex)