Bets to lose bodyguards
Government officials and others entitled to police protection and who are running in next year’s elections will lose their security details once the election season kicks in next month.
The Philippine National Police will recall beginning Jan. 10, the official start of the election period, the security details of officials who will be candidates.
Supt. Rogelio Simon, spokesperson of the Police Security and Protection Group (PSPG), said the revocation of the security details was in preparation for the May 2016 national elections.
Simon said the PSPG had sent letters to officials running in next year’s polls, informing them that the policemen assigned to them would be with them only until Jan. 9.
“As early as last month, we sent them letters to remind them of the election period. On Jan. 10, at the start of the election period, their security detail will be automatically recalled,” Simon said.
He said they wanted policemen to remain nonpartisan. Around 200 policemen from the PSPG will be recalled from their assignments as security details of officials and other personalities.
The policemen would be deployed as augmentation forces or placed on duty at PSPG headquarters.
The automatic revocation of security details applies to the President, Vice President, Senate President, Speaker, senators, congressmen, judges, police and military chiefs should they be running for office.
Simon said only the Commission on Elections could approve requests for security details from candidates with threats to their lives.
“Their request for security will be coursed straight to the Commission on Elections (Comelec) by Jan. 10 since the PNP is under the Comelec during the election period,” Simon said.
So far, the PNP has not received any requests from the Comelec for candidates seeking police security details. Officials and candidates may hire private bodyguards.