Parlade: Intel ops impeded by lack of ‘enabling’ laws
MANILA, Philippines — Anti-communist task force spokesperson Lt. Gen. Antonio Parlade on Tuesday acknowledged the gaps in intelligence operations against communist rebels, but said this was because of lack of proper security laws for them to do their task.
“We don’t have that enabling law to really help the security sector to do their job. We can’t rely on that Human Security Act. So ngayon meron na, itong anti-terror law,” he said in an interview with ABS CBN News Channel.
Parlade expressed belief that the Anti-Terror Law of 2020 (Republic Act No. 11479), which critics said was prone to abuse, would support the government’s efforts against insurgency.
He said the University of the Philippines-Department of National Defense accord, which was unilaterally terminated by the defense department, “prevented” them from engaging the UP community.
“That UP-DND accord, that prevented us from engaging student councils, teachers, administrators of schools precisely because of that,” he said.
The 1989 accord prevents the entry of security forces into UP campuses without prior permission from university officials.
Human rights groups and activists raised fears that the termination of the agreement would stifle academic freedom and freedom of expression in UP, considered as a bastion of activism.
But for Parlade, this has kept them from doing their mandate.
“Ang dami natin gaps na hindi natin mapunuan ang alam natin sa kalaban. Although we know they are there. Hindi natin mapunuan because we are not equipped… Hindi lang naman sa pondo lahat yan,” he said.
“We really need these laws for us to be able to do our job, our mandate in protecting our people,” Parlade added.
Military’s intelligence operations have drawn criticisms after several personalities and schools were included in an unvalidated list of those allegedly linked to communist rebels.
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