BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN
A top-ranking military official yesterday warned candidates of aiding the New People’s Army by complying to their demands, in relation to the May 9 elections.
Maj. Gen. Benedict Arevalo, Army’s 3rd Infantry Division commander, said he is reminding not only politicians, but also other individuals, not to give in to the demands of NPA bandits.
We already have the Anti-Terrorism Act of 2020, and aiding terrorist groups is aiding terrorism and is punishable by reclusion temporal to reclusion perpetua, Arevalo said.
If this incident happens, we ask you to inform state forces about the circumstances so that we can resolve it at once in coordination with the law enforcers, he added.
Arevalo reiterated that 3ID forces in Western and Central pledged to support a safe, fair and secured election on May 9.
He reported that the 3ID security measures started even before the start of the election period on January 9, through the conduct of joint checkpoints and monitoring of identified concerned areas in the two regions of Visayas, in tandem with the PNP and Commission on Elections.
With other concerns such as extortion and isolated incidents perpetuated by the CPP NPA, Arevalo said Army troops continuously conduct focused military operation in areas that the terrorist groups’ threat is imminent.
On March 24, top officials of the Comelec and security forces in Negros Island attended the Joint Provincial Security Control Center meeting at Camp Leon Kilat in Tanjay City, Negros Oriental.
It was attended by Brig. Gen. Inocencio Pasaporte, 303rd Infantry Brigade commander, Brig. Gen. Leonardo Pena, 302nd Infantry Brigade commander, Provincial Comelec supervisor Leonil Marco Castellano of Negros Oriental, PCol. Germano Mallari, provincial police director, as well as commanders of the 11th, 15th, 62nd and 94th Infantry Battalions.
Pasaporte assured Negrenses that the elections would be safe, accurate and fair in Negros Island, and that all Negrenses can freely choose their candidates.*