‘Upholding human rights a must in Comelec checkpoints’

CAGAYAN de Oro City Councilor Alvin Calingin is urging law enforcers manning the checkpoints set up by the Commission on Elections (Comelec) not only to inspect but to inform the people of their rights.

This came after the City Council received several complaints from motorists in the city.

Among the complaints the City Council received is that motorists are asked to step down from their vehicles and are subjected to bodily search.

Calingin said while enforcing the law, the police have also the obligation to protect the rights of the people.

Under Comelec Resolution 9688, checkpoints must be under the command of a regular member of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) or the Philippine National Police (PNP) with the rank of at least a Lieutenant or Inspector wearing complete uniforms and nameplates.

The resolution stated that only a visual search is allowed, therefore, authorities cannot compel motorists to step out of the car.

Councilor Ramon Tabor added that checkpoint signs are very important as per Comelec resolution, as he calls on the cooperation of motorists and the public to strictly abide by the law.

Under Comelec resolution, the checkpoint must be well-lighted and must be properly and clearly identified.

The Comelec also reminded the public that upon approaching checkpoints, motorists are advised to slow down, dim headlights and turn on the cabin lights.
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