PNP probes absence of police escorts in Isabela VCM torching
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine National Police (PNP) said it is probing why the dump truck that was carrying a vote counting machine, members of the board of election inspectors (BEI) and election paraphernalia was not secured by police personnel when it was attacked by armed men in Jones, Isabela.
“We are trying to see bakit nagpilit yung teachers na bumaba on their own when in fact na kqpag umalis yung teachers, yung mga [EBS] from polling centers going to the municipal, they should be escorted by law enforcers in the area,” PNP chief Gen. Oscar Albayalde said in a press briefing in Camp Crame on Tuesday.
The armed men forced the BEI members to surrender the VCM and the election paraphernalia which they then set on fire.
Albayalde said police escorts should have been present to secure the BEI members as the region is tagged as “critical” and is “highly-influenced” by the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and its armed-wing, the New People’s Army (NPA).
“We are trying to investigate kung bakit pinabayaan yung mga [BEI members] natin na bumiyahe on their own. Remember, that area is a critical area, it is highly-influenced by the CPP-NPAs,” the PNP chief said.
Albayalde added that the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), particularly personnel from the Philippine Marines, are securing the area. (Editor: Mike U. Frialde)
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