Friday, May 10, 2019

Don’t yield to extortion, bets told

From the Visayan Daily Star (May 10, 2019): Don’t yield to extortion, bets told

The Department of the Interior and Local Government warned anew candidates, especially incumbent officials, to stop submitting themselves to extortion activities of the New People’s Army, two days before the campaign period for the May 13 elections ends tomorrow.

Those paying campaign fees to the New People’s Army will be automatically charged in court, and will lose their police deputation, Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año stressed Wednesday night during the visit of President Rodrigo Duterte to Moises Padilla in Negros Occidental.

Año has issued Memorandum Circular 2018-211 reminding all local chief executives and local government officials that giving any form of support to communist rebels is a violation, not only of Executive Order 733, but also of RA 10168.

In the memorandum circular he issued, Año directed all regional, provincial, city and municipal peace and order councils to apply moral suasion, or to recommend sanctions against Local Chief Executives who are known to have supported communist rebels.

“By paying permits to campaign fees to communist rebels, you are supporting terrorism,” he added.

The military and earlier reported that more than 30 officials in Negros Occidental, mostly councilors, have links to the NPA

Año said he received positive feedback, especially from mayors, who had stopped paying campaign fees to the CPP-NPA.

He had also issued a warning earlier to disclose the names of politicians who have links to the NPA, if there are verified evidence against them, and file charges against them in court.

Año also enlisted the help of the populace to give them information on links of any politician to the communist terrorist organization, so that the DILG could act on them as soon as possible.

Año also said that the DILG will also intensify its campaign against those engaged in vote-buying, following the launching yesterday of the Comelec-DILG and Department of National Defense anti-vote buying campaign.

He said their gathering of evidence against candidates engaged in vote-buying will continue even after the May 13 3elections.

PBrig. Gen. John Bulalacao, regional police director of Western Visayas, also disclosed that he has given orders to his police forces to arrest violators of election laws, especially those involved in vote-buying activities.

We encourage everyone to have their cellphone cameras to get videos and photos of illegal acts committed by candidates and their supporters so they maybe prosecuted by the law, Bulalacao added.

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