Military urges local gov't officials not to back NPAs in Visayas
A military official urged local government officials not to support the New People’s Army (NPA) in Visayas.
Maj. Abel Potutan, public information officer of the Central Command, said Lieutenant General Noel Clement, the highest-ranked military official in the Visayas, made this call as the May 13 election nears.
“I urge all government officials in the Visayas region to strictly abide with Memorandum Circular 2018-211 and I remind the regional, provincial, city and municipal peace and order councils to use moral suasion or to recommend sanctions against local chief executives and other local officials supporting the NPAs in the Visayas,” said Clement.
Potutan said the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) issued Memorandum Circular 2018-211, reminding all local chief executives and local government officials that giving any form of support to the communist NPA terrorists is a violation of Executive Order 773 and Republic Act 10168 or The Terrorism Financing Prevention and Suppression Act of 2012.
He said Clement made his statement after Brig. Gen. Benedict Arevalo, 303rd Infantry brigade commander revealed that more than 30 local government officials in Negros Occidental have been supporting the rebels while some even allied themselves with the communist organization.
Clement warned that the military "will not hesitate to make the necessary actions and forward to DILG the names of candidates who are supporting the communist terrorist, and using them as private armed group during the elections".
"Those vying for government positions should not in anyway support the communist terrorist as they should be working with the government that the communist terrorists are trying to overthrow," Clement said.
"As government officials, they should be protecting the democratic process of the government,” he added. Robina Asido/DMS