Bomb blast wrecks bus: 1 killed, 32 hurt PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 19 September 2015 13:30

An 11-year-old girl was killed while 32 others were injured in a powerful bomb explosion Friday afternoon at a crowded bus terminal in the city’s  market district near Tomas Claudio and Calixto Sts.

City Police Office spokesman Chief Insp. Joel Tutuh told reporters the bomb exploded aboard a D’Biel  bus that had just arrived around 2:15 p.m. at the terminal  coming from the city’s west coast.

The bomb went off while the passengers were alighting from the bus in the terminal vicinities that were teeming with fruit and vegetable vendors and market goers.

“This is terrible.. the explosion is so powerful that it wrecked the bus,” exclaimed TV 11 reporter Albert Luna, who was at the scene five minutes after the blast.

Luna said one of the bus’ sides was blown away and its roof was ripped apart.

“I see women and children with blood being taken away by paramedics,” Luna said in a live reporting.

Luna’s co-reporter Emil Tuban quoted the bus driver and its dispatcher as saying they saw a man concealing his face with the hood of his jacket hurriedly leaving the area after he boarded the bus and left a suspicious package.

Sensing something suspicious, the driver said he chased the hooded man but before catching him up, a powerful explosion shook the area.

Glass doors and windows of nearby shops were shattered by the explosion.

Vice Mayor Cesar Iturralde, the current acting mayor in the absence of Mayor Maria Isabelle Climaco who is in China on official trip, told reporters 11 of the injured were taken to the government-run Zamboanga City Medical Center. The rest were brought to private hospitals.

Iturralde said the city government has already prepared assitance to the blast victims.

Killed was Fatima Imbraida, 11, of Sibuco,Zamboanga del Norte.

The hooded who left the suspicius baggage was caught by CCTV survellance camera installed in one of the neighboring shops

Police Regional Director Chief Supt. Miguel said in an interview with TV11 that investigators were looking at extortion as the possible motive behind the bomb attack.

Antonio said they have received reports that the D’Biel bus operator had been receiving extortion letters from unidentified persons.

Friday’s bomb explosion comes some two months after another blast killed a woman and injured nine others at the ground floor of a massage parlor on July 23.

The July blast occurred at the ground floor of the Manly Massage Parlor just few blocks from the scene of the bus explosion. —Dan Toribio Jr.