MANILA, Philippines – Armed men have abducted the mayor of a southern Philippine town from her house and fled with her on motorboats, officials said Tuesday.
Five armed men kidnapped Mayor Gemma Adana of Naga, a coastal town in the southern province of Zamboanga Sibugay, from her house while she was with friends late Monday, Interior Secretary Mar Roxas said.
Roxas condemned the abduction and said a manhunt was underway. A provincial crisis committee has been convened.
Naga police officer Wilprim Timsan says the unidentified abductors have so far not communicated with Adana's family nor made any ransom demand.
Abu Sayyaf militants, kidnap gangs and other criminal groups operate in the province.
Police said five men barged into the mayor's house while a sixth, who operated their boat, waited.
The military said the kidnappers headed toward the mountainous Kaliantana Island, which is part of the Naga municipality, where three children abducted late March from nearby Zamboanga del Sur province also were taken. It is uncertain whether the children's kidnappers were also involved in the kidnapping of the mayor.