MANILA, Philippines—Self-confessed killer and ‘Davao Death Squad’ (DDS) member Edgar Matobato claimed on Monday that he witnessed Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte kill at least eight times.
In an interview with Inquirer.net at his safe house, the gunman turned state witness recalled how Duterte killed eight individuals who were all men and mostly criminals. According to Matabato, seven of them were killed in a gravel quarry in Barangay Ma-a in Davao City from 1998 to 2000.
Matobato said he couldn’t provide identities of all murdered individuals.
“Hindi namin alam ang pangalan (We did not know the names),” Matobato was quoted as saying in an Inquirer.net report.
However, he named one “Amisola”, a National Bureau of Investigation agent who Duterte allegedly killed during an altercation.
According to Matobato, the DDS were running after kidnappers when Amisola’s pickup truck blocked their way. A gunfight later ensued between Amisola and Duterte’s alleged group of gunmen. While Amisola was hiding under his vehicle, Duterte allegedly fired at Amisola using an Uzi submachine gun, emptying two magazines.
Matobato added that Duterte would go to Ma-a quarry at nighttime to kill alleged criminals execution-style.
“Pumupunta yan. Sya ang bumabaril. Nakaupo ang tao (He would go there. He’s the one who would pull the trigger while the person was seated),” Matobato said in the same report.
“Minsan gabi yun pumupunta basta pinakaimportante ang binabaril (He would sometimes go there if an important person was to be killed),” he added.
Matobato also claimed that Duterte’s eldest son, now Davao Vice Mayor Paolo Duterte ordered the DDS to kill his enemies, including a man he had an argument with at a gas station.
However, he clarified that he has never seen the young Duterte kill someone. He also said that no other members of the Duterte siblings were connected with the DDS.
Duterte has said before that he doesn’t personally know Matobato saying that his security details when he was mayor of Davao were only composed of the police force and some Army officials.
Paolo Duterte also denied Matobato’s claim that he was a security aide for the former.