PNP braces for NPA’s extortion activities as elections near

By Christopher Lloyd Caliwan

June 13, 2021, 12:43 pm

MANILA – Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Guillermo Eleazar directed the police to work closely with the military in preventing communist terrorists from collecting “permit-to-campaign” fees from politicians with less than a year left before the 2022 national and local elections.

This, after the Armed Forces of the Philippines on Saturday said it will coordinate with the PNP and local government units to stop the illegal activities of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and its armed wing New People’s Army (NPA).

“I am directing all police offices and units to be extra vigilant in your respective areas of responsibility and strictly monitor the extortion activities of these communist rebels in demanding money from candidates in exchange for so-called ‘permits to campaign’ for the coming elections,” Eleazar said in a statement on Saturday.

Eleazar also warned politicians planning to run for posts in the 2022 elections against giving “permit-to-campaign” fees to the CPP-NPA as they will be complicit in the communist rebels’ illegal activities.

“Magsilbing babala din po sana ito sa mga kakandidato sa halalan na kung ito’y gagawin ninyo, kayo din po ay magkakaroon ng pananagutan sa batas dahil katumbas ito ng pagbibigay ng financial support sa CPP-NPA (It should also serve as a warning to election candidates that if you do this you will also be held accountable by law because it is equivalent to providing financial support to the CPP-NPA),” he said.

He said the money collected by the communist rebels will definitely be used in the purchase of more firearms and other logistics to sustain the CPP-NPA’s senseless and pointless “armed struggle.”

Eleazar added that giving in to the communist rebels’ demand for money would only embolden them to continue their extortion activities.

He urged particularly politicians to immediately report or coordinate with them if they are victimized by the CPP-NPA.

“Together with the AFP, we will intensify our security measures against communist rebels so that we can prevent this illegal activity,” he said.

He pointed out that this type of extortion activity by the CPP-NPA just shows that they are just common thugs and no longer adhere to any principle.

The CPP-NPA is listed as a terrorist organization by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the Philippines. (PNA)