Batocabe widow to take slain husband's place in Daraga elections

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Gertie Batocabe (Preisdential Photo)

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, January 17) — The wife of a slain Bicol lawmaker will be taking his place in the Daraga mayoralty race.

Dennis Batocabe, the brother of AKO BICOL party list representative Rodel Batocabe confirmed that Gertrudes "Gertie" Batocabe would replace her husband in the elections.

In a phone interview, Dennis said the announcement was made to answer questions on the issue, and an official announcement with Gertie will be made on January 30 — which also marks 40 days after the killing of her husband.

However, in a text message, Justin Batocabe — the son of Rodel and Gertie — said, "Wala pa pong final decision regarding the matter po [there is no final decision regarding the matter]."

READ: Duterte to Daraga mayor: Stay away from Batocabe kin who will run in elections

On January 7, AKO BICOL party-list Rep. Alfredo Garbin told CNN Philippines they were eyeing Batocabe's son to take his father's place and serve the remainder of his term in the House of Representatives.

The lawmaker, along with his security escort Orlando Diaz, was killed at a gift-giving event in Daraga on December 22 last year.

Carlwyn Baldo, the current mayor of Daraga, has been implicated as the main culprit in the killing, although he has denied involvement.

Meanwhile, the six prime suspects in the slay are in police custody — one of them, Henry Yuson, confessed to being the gunman and that Baldo ordered them to kill Batocabe.

READ: Arroyo calls for full prosecution of Batocabe slay suspects

Legazpi-based stringer Rosas Olarte contributed to this report.