PNP, AFP chiefs headed for Mindanao amid reports of poll violence


Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Dionardo Carlos on Monday said he and Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) chief of staff, Gen. Andres Centino will look into apparent cases of escalating election-related violence in Mindanao.

Speaking during the regular flag-raising ceremony in Camp Crame, Carlos said he earlier traveled to the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) and General Santos City due to reports of an “increase in the intense political rivalry incidents in one week”.

“Babalik po kami ni (AFP) chief of staff Centino sa (We will return to) BARMM, Caraga, in Soccksargen, because these are the areas where we find presence of threat groups and private armed groups. So that’s a commitment based on my talks with Gen. Andres Centino, we want to make sure the elections are going to be peaceful,” Carlos added.

He also said the PNP and the AFP are set to hold another command conference next week regarding election security plans.

“We want to make sure that we are on our timeline and our actions are all aligned to the plan to keep the peace during the elections. We will help each other. We should always be part of the organizational goal, hindi po yung (not the) personal goal,” the PNP chief added.

Ready for Alert Level 1

With Metro Manila and 38 other areas placed shifting to Alert Level 1 starting Tuesday, Carlos has ordered the National Capital Region Police Office to coordinate with the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority and the Inter-Agency Council for Traffic to streamline traffic law enforcement and ensure smooth passenger limit regulations in public conveyance by concerned agencies and local government units.

“Even in areas under Alert Level 1, the PNP will continue to ensure observance of minimum public health standards such physical distancing, use of personal protection, and restrictions on crowding in public places,” Carlos said.

He said quarantine control points are deactivated in areas under Alert Level 1 as a result of the lifting of restrictions on intra-zonal and inter-zonal travel.

“However, PNP checkpoints co-located with these quarantine control points will remain operational for law enforcement and anti-criminality operations; and implementation of the election gun ban and employment of unauthorized security forces imposed by Comelec (Commission on Elections),” Carlos said.

Aside from NCR, other areas placed under Alert Level 1 include:

• Abra, Apayao, Baguio City and Kalinga in the Cordillera Administrative Region;

• Dagupan City, Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, La Union and Pangasinan in Region 1 (Ilocos);

• Batanes, Cagayan, City of Santiago, Isabela, and Quirino in Region 2(Cagayan Valley);

• Angeles City, Aurora, Bataan, Bulacan, Olongapo City, Pampanga, and Tarlac in Region 3 (Central Luzon);

• Cavite and Laguna in Region 4-A (Calabarzon);

• Marinduque, Puerto Princesa City, and Romblon in Region 4-B (Mimaropa); and

• Naga City and Catanduanes in Region 5 (Bicol).

In the Visayas, also under Alert Level 1 are:

• Aklan, Bacolod City, Capiz, and Guimaras in Region 6 (Western Visayas);

• Siquijor in Region 7 (Central Visayas); and

• Biliran in Region 8 (Eastern Visayas).

In Mindanao, the following areas under Alert Level 1 are:

• Zamboanga City in Region 9 (Zamboanga Peninsula);

• Cagayan de Oro City and Camiguin in Region 10 (Northern Mindanao); and

• Davao City in Region 11 (Davao).

Source: Philippines News Agency