300,000 security guards tapped vs terror
- Jaime Laude () - March 30, 2004 - 12:00am
Over 300,000 security guards have been tapped by the National Anti-Terrorism Task Force (NATF) to serve as its "eyes and ears on the ground" in the fight against terrorism.

Defense Secretary Eduardo Ermita, NATF chief, said engaging the services of the security guards is "an anticipatory posture" of the government in its anti-terror campaign. At the same time, Ermita assured the public of a peaceful Holy Week.

The NATF chief ordered a heightened alert for all law enforcement agencies on the possibility of a terror attack during the Lenten season or during the summer months when most take their vacation in the provinces.

Ermita made the assurance following a meeting with law enforcement officials and representatives from the Philippine Association of Detectives Protective Agency Organization (Padpao) at Camp Aguinaldo yesterday.

Padpao officials led by Ramon Vergado agreed to allow their security guards to complement the efforts of NATF and the law enforcement agencies in the ongoing anti-terrorism drive. "In recent history, we have seen the disaster caused by this evil (terrorism). And so, there is a need to stop it at all costs to save precious human lives and vital utilities, facilities and installations," Vergado said.

The agreement included providing the security guards with necessary information and training on how to spot potential terrorists and their known movements.

The guards are also under orders to immediately report any information or terror threat to the nearest military headquarters or police precinct in their area. Security guards in Metro Manila are tasked to report any terror activity direct to the Philippine National Police-Civil Security Group headquarters in Camp Crame under Chief Superintendent Jaime Karingal.

CAMP AGUINALDO CAMP CRAME CHIEF SUPERINTENDENT JAIME KARINGAL DEFENSE SECRETARY EDUARDO ERMITA ERMITA HOLY WEEK METRO MANILA NATIONAL ANTI-TERRORISM TASK FORCE PADPAO PHILIPPINE ASSOCIATION OF DETECTIVES PROTECTIVE AGENCY ORGANIZATION PHILIPPINE NATIONAL POLICE-CIVIL SECURITY GROUP
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