Rescue try for Yusoph son yields negative results anew

Posted at 07/03/10 12:12 AM

MANILA, Philippines - A rescue operation launched by the military in Marawi City for the abducted son of a Commission on Elections (Comelec) official yielded negative results anew.

The military said that a civilian gave them information where Noralden Yusoph, son of Comelec Commissioner Elias Yusoph, was supposedly being kept by his abductors. After determining the possible credibility of the information, the Philippine Army and police immediately launched a rescue operation.

Troops and police were immediately sent and surrounded apartment located in Barangay Daguduban in Marawi City.

They were met by the apartment owner, a certain Abul, who let them enter the apartment.

An hour-long search inside the apartment yielded no son of the Comelec official.

Authorities, however, said that there were indications that the abduction victim was kept there and that the kidnappers escaped taking with them Noralden.

“May mga indications kasi, like pack of cigarettes… Siguro naiwan lang iyon. Nandoon pa iyong ashtray e, hindi pa natapon… ‘andoon lang on the table,” said Brig. Gen. Rey Ardo, Army’s 103rd Infantry Brigade commander.

Ardo admitted that their rescue operations are being hampered by the lack of cooperation by civilians.

He said the latest operation was their 6th attempt.

Ardo said they are now requesting Marawi City Mayor Fahad Pre Salic to activate the crisis management committee to help find the abduction victim especially that investigations point that Noralden is being kept in the city.

“I just hope na ang mayor natin ng Marawi City ay tumulong,” said Ardo.

It has been 11 days since the abduction of Noralden.

On Thursday the kidnappers reportedly sent a fax message to the Yusoph family supposedly explaining their reasons for taking captive Noralden.

There were reports that the kidnappers are now asking P25 million for the release of the poll commissioner's son.

Authorities earlier said that the kidnappers' initial demand was the nullification of election results in the towns of Malabang, Pitong Taraka, and Masiu in Lanao del Sur. From a report of Roxanne Arevalo, ABS-CBN Iligan