Black Saturday in Kalinga: Guv Bet Rommel Diasen Killed


Kalinga gubernatorial candidate Rommel Diasen was ambushed today while he was en route to Magnao Village in Tabuk, Kalinga.

The police is still looking for suspects and the possible motive for the murder. You can read more information on gmanewstv which, as is common among mainstream media reports, mixes up the Cordillera provinces (in this case Kalinga and Mt. Province).

Diasen is the incumbent Vice Governor but is gunning for governorship in this election round. We will keep tabs on this news as developments arise. Our condolences to Diasen’s family.

UPDATE 1: Frank Cimatu reports that Diasen was shot dead while delivering a speech in the Magnao barangay hall (and not while enroute to the village as GMA News reports). A lone gunman shot Diasen at close range. Read Frank’s blog post here.

UPDATE 2: In case you are wondering whether someone may replace Vice Governor Diasen in the gubernatorial race, the answer is yes. However, such a person must be from the party to which the Vice Governor belongs to (in this case, Lakas) and must be certified by the party. [Section 77 of the Omnibus Election Code].

UPDATE 3: Cordillera regional police forms Task Force Diasen to look into the killing. I hope that the police STOP spouting their speculations regarding the motives behind the killing. Ang problema sa police authorities natin, hindi pa nila talaga iniimbistagahan ang kaso meron na silang kung ano-anong teorya sa likod ng pagpatay kay Diasen.

Their favorite theories at this point are: a) political and b) tribal conflict. These are not unreasonable theories but for the police to be suggesting these angles when they really didn’t do any investigation is a sign of their lack of professionalism. Wala pa nga silang maipakitang FACTS tungkol sa kaso atat na atat naman silang magsalita tungkol sa kung ano-anong motibo. For crying out loud sirs, shut your mouths and just do your job. Leave the speculations to istambays and bloggers like me.

UPDATE 4: Police identifies Diasen’s killer as Joel Melod and speculates that Diasen’s murder could be the result of a tribal conflict. Regionwide manhunt for Melod is on. More from ABS-CBN.

UPDATE 5: Kalinga Congressman Lawrence Wacnang, who is running for governor in this elections, denies accusations that he is behind the killing of his gubernatorial rival. Quote by Wacnang: “Rommel had been a very good and close friend of mine. Despite his decision to run against me, our personal relationship had remained intact.” Wacnang says that he will attend the wake of the slain candidate. More from

NOTE: Future updates will be posted here. Thanks.

SOMEWHAT RELATED POST: Cordillera Election Roundup.

9 thoughts on “Black Saturday in Kalinga: Guv Bet Rommel Diasen Killed”

  1. Politicians will always be targets, so where’s the security (like the Secret Service) when this happened??? Are politicians campaigning without security?

  2. Lax security, inside job, are just part of RP politics. Assassin jumped the stage where Mr. Diasen was delivering a speech and pumped six bullets into his head and body. No word yet if gunman was captured or killed. My condolences
    to his family. Very sad Easter to all concerned….


  3. Hi Wil,
    I do not think politicians have security (like the Secret Service) but some of them may hire personal bodyguards who may or may not really be trained to protect his/her principal. Thanks

    Hi TruBlue,
    Yes it’s really sad that killings such as this has become part of our political culture. Siguro the police will just pick up anyone and present him as the gunman. Ganoon ang mga police eh

  4. In broad daylight yet no one cared to wrestle da shooter! Agree w/u Bill, cops will just pick up an innocent patsy to end case. Reminds us of the sorry state of “Mr. Galman” if this happens.
    Sick people…..goodhealth.


  5. Very sad indeed! I’m from Tabuk but now living overseas. Former Mayor Diasen had done great contributions in improving Tabuk as far as I can recall. He is basically the most prominent and great rival of Wacnang, the three-time incumbent Congressman of Kalinga, who, as far as I can recall, has not sponsor or introduce any bill in the Philippines Congress. What I can recall is seeing those big billboards with his name claiming that he is improving the roads between Kalinga and Isabela! He’s a Trapo. Wake up kakailians nga taga-Kalinga! Are you not tired of the same faces running our province?

  6. Hi Ferri,
    Politics can get to be really bloody no? Never thought it would happen in the Cordilleras but it did.

    Hi TruBlue,
    They have now identified a suspect. Hope he is not Mr. Galman.

    Hi Anonymous,
    Thanks for visiting us and for your comment. Its good to know that there are people like you who are voicing out their appreciation for Diasen’s contributions to Tabuk.

    In fairness to Wacnang, I’m sure he filed the bill (now a law) which converted Tabuk into a city. Although like you, I hope there will be a new breed of Cordillera politicians just so we won’t be seeing the same old faces.

    Thanks again for visiting us and we hope you continue to visit in the future 🙂

  7. I like RP politics, to me it is an interesting and fun game to play when it is peacefull as there is a lot of social gatherings, free food and ride etc (a part of our culture). I think it is about time political leaders of the former BIBAK provinces should include in their campaign speeches the preaching of peace every time they open their mouth in rallies. Hopefully this would stop fanatic followers from killing opponents. Hopefully we Igorots can showcase democracy wherein we are free to criticise anything including corruption without fear of being shot. Politicians would not need a security then. I am not from Kalinga but I have met some of your leaders in Baguio City wayback like Wacnang. Like anonymous, I now live overseas and elections here are very peaceful.

  8. Hi Igorot Down Under,
    I’m with you in hoping that our CAR politicians would be able sana to showcase democracy; and I hope a more egalitarian one. Eh ang problema ay sila yata ang nahahawa sa style ng democracy sa lowlands so we now have emerging Igorot political dynasties and political violence (as seen in the Diasen case).

    Thanks for your comment and for visiting this blog. We hope you continue to visit us and continue adding your insights to our discussions.

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