MANILA

PSG doing a 'good job' to ensure Duterte's safety

THE Presidential Security Group (PSG) is doing a "good job" to ensure that President Rodrigo Duterte is free from harm, Malacañang said on Thursday, April 4.

Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo made the guarantee, as the President had divulged that there was an assassination plot against him.

Panelo said the supposed plan to kill Duterte was nothing new since it is public knowledge that the Chief Executive has made "many powerful enemies" for initiating reforms for the country's betterment under his leadership.

"There has always been threats against national leaders, and all the more so against this President who has made enemies in all fronts when he declared a war against drugs, criminality, corruption and all forms of illegality," the Palace official said in a statement.

"Whether the threats are real or imagined, we take them seriously and the Palace commends the PSG for doing a good job," he added.

On Tuesday, April 2, Duterte spoke before his audience in Malabon City behind bullet-proof glass during the campaign sortie of his ruling party, as he alluded that someone wanted him dead.

The PSG explained on Wednesday, April 3, that they had to place a bullet-proof glass in front of Duterte's podium because the campaign rally of the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan was situated in an "open area."

PSG commander Brigadeir General Jose Eriel Niembra said all "multi-faceted threats are usual considerations," especially since his security team's mandate is to protect Duterte.

"With or without outstanding threat, it is but imperative for PSG to implement the highest security protocols," Niembra said.

"In every engagement, assessment of the venue is conducted in order to determine the type of security measures needed to be enforced," he added.

Panelo said that while Duterte was merely brushing aside the threats to his life, the Chief Executive needs to abide the security protocols implemented by the PSG.

He stressed that the PSG's role is to provide the "highest level of security protocols," which include "putting up a bulletproof glass panel if it deems necessary at a given situation, to keep the man holding the most powerful position in the country safe."

"There is also no denying that President Rodrigo Roa Duterte is a man of the masses and has made himself accessible to the public, and will do so at every opportunity. The man could not care less about these threats," Panelo said.

"[Duterte] is, however, bound by security protocols and, whether he likes it or not, these protocols are mandatorily attached to the position he holds," he added.

Panelo said the Palace was elated that Filipinos understand the situation of the President.

"We also thank the overwhelming majority of Filipinos who understand the complexities involved in protecting the President's welfare and show genuine concern on the security of [Duterte]," he said. (SunStar Philippines)


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