PNP cites a decrease in election-related incidents in 2013
MANILA, Philippines—The Philippine National Police (PNP) said there has been a decrease of election-related incidents this year, compared to that of the year 2007 and 2010, Interior Secretary Mar Roxas said.
Roxas said that from January to April 26 this year, PNP recorded 17 validated election-related incidents in the 15 areas of concern, noting a favorable decrease from 2010’s record of 33 and 2007’s record of 23.
There has also been a decrease in the number of victims, he said, citing the record of 17 for January to April 26, 2013, compared to the recorded 53 victims during the 2010 elections and the 47 in 2007.
Meanwhile, Roxas said the ambush incident in Nunungan, Lanao del Norte last week against the group of Mayor Abdul Malik Manampara, where over 10 people were killed, cannot be considered as an ERI, considering the alleged motive behind the attack.
“. . . the established motive therein is RIDO or clan war due to land dispute and blood debts from the warring factions. This means such incident could transpire even there is no election,” Roxas explained.
He also said that during the pre-election period from June 2012 to January 12 2013, the PNP was able to capture 113 suspected members if private armed groups, and recovered 233 firearms from them.
PNP, along with the Department of Interior and Local Government, started their preparations for the May 13 midterm elections last November 16, 2012.
Task Force SAFE 2013 was created, and 15 provinces were then declared as areas of concern based on the presence of private armies, intense political rivalry, presence of criminal groups, and loose firearms.
Furthermore, in cooperation with the Commission on Elections, and other concerned agencies, PNP also established checkpoints and joint security control centers in selected areas; and provided protective security detail to individuals with threats on their lives.