The Philippine National Police (PNP) is sending its elite Special Action Force (SAF) troopers to the different election hotspots in the country in line with the upcoming barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) polls.
In a statement, Police Dir. Gen. Oscar Albayalde said that a company of SAF commandos will be sent to violence-prone areas such as the provinces of Abra and Masbate, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, Basilan, Tawi-Tawi, and Maguindanao.
The PNP chief added that the highly-trained cops will begin their deployment on May 7, exactly a week before the election day on May 14.
“All systems go. We have a template on how to handle these kinds of situations, templates which are already tried and tested,” PNP Spokesperson Chief Supt. John Bulalacao said.
The PNP has earlier identified at least 5,744 areas as election hotspots due to the intense political rivalry and the presence of rebellious groups.
Just recently, 20 casualties have already been recorded, including 12 barangay officials, two aspiring chairmen, and six local residents.