Police beefs up force for May 13 polls

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An additional 30,000-strong force will be deployed to ensure secure and fair elections on May 13, the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) said.

The reinforcement consists of 18,000 police officers assigned to do desk jobs in various Philippine National Police (PNP) headquarters and offices, DILG Chief Manuel "Mar" Roxas said.

The remaining 12,000, he added, will be sourced from new recruits, who are still training to become authorized police officers.

"All of them will get field assignments two weeks before the elections to ensure the presence of the PNP and the government in making this poll peaceful," Roxas said.

Related story: Campaign period 'more peaceful' in 2013, police says

The Cabinet member explained the new recruits will be paired with full-fledged police officers, who will guide them in performing their duties.

The new recruits will not be given any firearms to avoid trouble that may arise from inexperience, PNP chief Director General Alan Purisima said.

They will be also be deployed to "less troublesome areas" or the areas outside the 15 priority areas tagged by police last year, Roxas further noted.

The 15 areas are Abra, Pangasinan, Ilocos Sur, La Union, Cagayan, Pampanga, Nueva Ecija, Batangas, Cavite, Masbate, Samar, Misamis Occidental, Maguindanao, Lanao del Sur, and Basilan.

Also read: Philippine rebels rake it in from vote extortion, official says

"They will be used to increase PNP's presence during election day. Those who would need help may ask help from them," Roxas said.

The announcement came as Roxas launched DILG's "Oplan Last Two Weeks" that will put in place security measures starting May 3 until May 16 or three days after the election day.

Roxas also announced that the DILG and PNP have cancelled the all application for leaves during the two weeks covering the election day on May 13.

Agencies already established links with telecommunication and power companies to prevent service disruptions during the polls, the Cabinet official said.

Every Pinoy votes will have to choose about 30 to 31 candidates on May 13, but here's how many elective positions are up for grabs for the local and national polls. (Infographic by CJ Brosas)
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Yahoo Southeast Asia Newsroom
Mon, Apr 8, 2013 6:00 PM PHT

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