From the Philippine Daily Inquirer (Apr 11): Malaysia frees LP candidates in Sabah; no raps filed
A Liberal Party mayoral candidate from Tawi-Tawi and 31 supporters who were
swept by strong currents to Lahad Datu in Sabah last Tuesday are free to return
home without any charges being filed against them, Malacañang said Thursday.
Strategic Communications Secretary Ricky Carandang said the government has
convinced Malaysia that Rommel Matba and his supporters were not reinforcements
for the followers of the Sultan of Sulu who had crossed into Lahad Datu in
“They wandered into that territory, they’ve been processed and they’ll be
back maybe by today or tomorrow,” Carandang told a Palace briefing.
According to Interior Secretary Manuel Roxas II, the Malaysians saw that
“this was not an incursion and that their boat was only swept by current and
wind. And they saw that they had relevant papers and IDs with them and that they
were carrying campaign materials.”
Quoting the Philippine National Police, Roxas said Thursday night that Matba
and his companions were released from Malaysian custody and were ”now at
Sandakan pier on their way home.”