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No use of anti-insurgency funds for 'census' in villages: PNP

By Christopher Lloyd Caliwan / Philippine News Agency

PNP chief, Gen. Guillermo Eleazar (File photo)

MANILA – Philippine National Police (PNP) chief, Gen. Guillermo Eleazar, on Friday maintained there is no misuse of anti-insurgency funds allotted to the police force.

Eleazar made the remark in response to Senator Panfilo Lacson's allegation that the PNP used funds from the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF ELCAC) to conduct a census in the different barangays nationwide which might be linked to next year's elections.

“The PNP is not conducting nor instructing our chiefs of police to ask 30 percent of barangay residents to give their names, contact numbers, and addresses for census. We have no use for any census,” Eleazar said in a virtual presser.

In support of Executive Order No. 70 mandating a whole-of-nation approach against the communist insurgency, he said the PNP implemented the Intensified Cleanliness Policy - cleanliness in the office, cleanliness in the ranks, and cleanliness in the community.

He said another approach that the PNP has done is to deepen police-community relations programs by working with different communities nationwide, including non-government organizations (NGOs), and advocacy groups.

“We are promoting cooperation and coordination between the PNP and the community to improve our services and work hand in hand with members of the community for our anti-drug and anti-criminality efforts, as well as protecting the community, especially the youth from falling prey to syndicates and being recruited by communist fronts. Everything that is being done by the PNP in relation to the NTF ELCAC funds is above board, and we welcome any investigation that may be conducted,” he added.

He said the PNP units are also conducting humanitarian assistance and related disaster relief operations through its Barangaynihan food and help bank which is a grassroots engagement effort to address the devastating social and economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic, as well as natural and man-made disasters.

“We would like to thank Senator Lacson, 'cause this has given us an avenue to air the side of the PNP and to show the projects and programs for the people. The PNP is not disheartened by such unfounded statements, we know that they are by people who would not want us to succeed, especially the fronts of CPP-NPA-NDF (Communist Party of the Philippines-New People's Army-National Democratic Front), for our success will make people know and realize that they have been deceiving people all along to advance their interest. For the only way they are relevant is when they make it appear that the government is inept and indifferent to the needs of the people,” he said.

Eleazar said the government and the PNP are just bent on directly helping the people including those long-neglected communities.

“The PNP's programs are good and they directly help the people. Anti-government forces notice what we are doing, and they are probably the ones spreading these rumors to try to stop our community mobilization and cleansing programs. Fortunately, Senator Lacson opened up about these rumors that came to him. We will use this opportunity to finally bring out and let the people see the projects of the PNP that directly impacts the community,” he said. (PNA)

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