FOUR people, including a barangay chairman, on Tuesday were killed while seven others were injured in a dynamite explosion in Balud, Masbate.
The Police Regional Office 5 identified the fatalities as Lina Recto, the chairwoman of Bgy. Pajo, Balud; Mac Mac dela Cruz, Ronelyn Banez Bulala, and Aisa Sese.
The four were almost beyond recognition due to injuries they sustained.
The wounded were Tessie Villaruel Badahos, 59; Leonard Recto Amistoso, 42; Ruel Henticay Chavez, 26; Junvin Villaruel Badahos, 24; Ivan Canones Mahilum, 20; John Paul Villaruel Badahos, 12; and Chris Villaruel Bagaipo, 7.
They were rushed to Balud Municipal Hospital for treatment.
Bicol police director Brig. Gen. Jonnel Estomo said that an initial investigation showed that a stockpile of dynamites being used in illegal fishing exploded in the house of the village chief around 1:15 p.m. on Tuesday.
Estomo condoled with the families of the blast victims and said it should serve as a lesson for all local residents not to engage in dynamite fishing.
“Dynamite fishing not only can kill or maim a person but worse, it badly damages our aquatic resources,” he said.
“Wag ninyong ipilit ang bawal kung mahal ninyo ang inyong mga buhay at kapamilya. Mas piliin sana ninyong gumawa ng tama at naaayon sa ating batas,” Estomo said.
The Masbate Provincial Explosive Ordnance and Canine Unit and the Provincial Laboratory Crime Office are conducting an investigation why there were dynamites in Recto’s house.
Authorities warned people of the danger of keeping explosives in their home.
With Alfred Dalizon