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Nation

Southern Tagalog politicians closely watched: To determine who have private armies

- Non Alquitran, Ed Amoroso -

MANILA, Philippines - The Calabarzon police is closely monitoring activities of politicians in Southern Tagalog to determine who among them are employing private armies.

Calabarzon police director Chief Superintendent Rolando Añonuevo directed his five police provincial directors to gather evidence against the politicians concerned “to serve as basis for further police actions.”

The Philippine National Police is in the thick of its effort to identify private armies nationwide for dismantling days before the coming May elections.

According to Añonuevo, all reports regarding private armies in Southern Tagalog should be submitted in his office before Jan. 7, when the PNP hierarchy will be with Chairman Jose Melo, of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) in Camp Crame.

The Calabarzon police chief also ordered his provincial directors to recall all PNP personnel detailed as protective security of government officials and businessmen.

Included in his order were policemen providing security services to vital government and private installations in the province or locality which are not covered by appropriate authority from PNP chief Director General Jesus Verzosa.

He said elements of the PNP and military deputized by the Comelec for election duties should be in proper uniform.

Loose firearms

Moreover, the Calabarzon police will conduct a massive campaign against loose firearms as it intensified preparations for the coming May polls.

Añonuevo directed his five provincial directors to intensify the Operation Bakal (Oplan Bakal) operations in nightspots and other areas of convergence to confiscate loose firearms.

Añonuevo said the gun ban in the coming May elections will be strictly enforced in the Calabarzon area as permits to carry firearms outside of residence will be suspended from Jan. 10 to June 9.

Likewise, all authority granting police security detail to government officials, VIPs and other private individuals under threat are also revoked.

“Only PNP, AFP, NBI personnel and Protective Agents of PDA (Private Detective Agencies) shall be deputized as security detail during the election period provided that these personnel shall be in proper uniform and in the actual performance of official security duties,” Añonuevo clarified. All security details are subject to approval of the Committee on the Ban on Firearms and Security Personnel of the Comelec.

CALABARZON

CAMP CRAME

CHAIRMAN JOSE MELO

CHIEF SUPERINTENDENT ROLANDO A

COMELEC

DIRECTOR GENERAL JESUS VERZOSA

FIREARMS AND SECURITY PERSONNEL OF THE COMELEC

JAN

OPERATION BAKAL

POLICE

SOUTHERN TAGALOG

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