By CRIZ DIAZ
with GERRY LEE GORIT
and MARK FRANCISCO
Senior Supt. Roy Bahian, chief of the Cagayan de Oro City Police Office (Cocpo), said the task force was created eight hours after the shooting to determine the motive of the killing and identify the suspects and the mastermind of the shooting.
The lead agency is the Cagayan de Oro City Police Office (Cocpo) with the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) and the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) as members.
Bahian said the 48-years-old Rotoras, also the incumbent President of the Philippine Association of State Universities and Colleges (PASUC), was shot dead at close range by three unidentified gunmen when the official went home about 1:00 a.m. Saturday from a party held in an outskirt hotel here, Bahian said.
Bahian said that the suspects may have waited for the victim to come home and might have prior knowledge that Rotoras was attending a party.
Jonathan Mabaylan, the driver of Rotoras, told the police that Rotoras came out of the car and walked toward their house while he negotiated the vehicle to park when he noticed that the official was sprawled to the ground.
“I saw Rotoras sprawled on the pavement and though he had a slipped, so I immediately went to help him, but notice that he was lying in a pool of blood, which prompted me to shout for help,” Mabaylan said.
The Scene of the Crime Operatives (SOCO) said that Rotoras succumbed to eight fatal gunshots in various parts of his body, including the head, from a .45 caliber pistol, the police said.
The lone security guard at the subdivision’s main gate told the police that he heard two gunshots about 1:00 a.m. Saturday.
He said that moments after he heard the shooting, Rotora’s wife called for police assistance. Neighbors brought Rotoras to the city hospital, but the attending physicians declared him dead on arrival.
Bahian said that the investigators have the suspicions that the killers climbed on the subdivision’s wall near Rotoras residence and used the same as the escape route.
A circuit camera television (CCTV) mounted near the subdivision’s main gate has recorded a black pickup, which speed away after the shooting incident.
Bahian said the investigators are now trying to review the CCTV records in the area before and after the shooting incident occurred.
Bahian said there were no known threats in Rotoras’ life.
Rotoras, who served as the head of the USTP since 2006, was also the president of the Philippine Association of State Universities and Colleges (PASUC) for four consecutive terms.
Elected unopposed for the fourth time, Rotoras was supposed to end his two-year term as PASUC head in 2019.
“His unopposed re-election bespeaks of his excellent leadership, hard work, selfless dedication and commitment towards leveling up the standards of education in the country,” read a portion of the article posted on the USTP’s website referring to his reelection as PASUC president.
It was during his stint as USTP president that the university saw two major transformations, first from being declared as Mindanao University of Science and Technology (MUST) to its current status as the center of science and technology in Southern Philippines.
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