Soldiers told: Remain non-partisan

A HIGH ranking officer of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) on Wednesday reiterated his call to all army soldiers to remain non-partisan in the May 9 polls.

AFP chief-of-staff General Hernando DCA Iriberri, who visited the Eastern Mindanao Command (Eastmincom) in Naval Station Felix Apolinario in Panacan last Wednesday, said that all soldiers must not engage in any partisan politics especially during election period.

Irriberi, who was welcomed by the Eastmincom commander Major General Rey Leonardo Guerrero along with other field commanders, visited the Eastmincom to check the progress on the security operations for the elections and support all development efforts of different army units in the communities.

"Just focus on your job. Let us ensure that our people can exercise their right to vote, freely, and safely. Just implement the law so you cannot go wrong," Irriberi said.

Irriberi, however, said that all soldiers must continue their operations to maintain the peace and order situation in the communities in line with their Oplan Bayanihan.

It can be recalled that the 10th Infantry Division (ID) has monitored the series of reports that the New People's Army (NPA) has started distributing extortion letters to different politicians.

Captain Rhyan Batchar, spokesperson for the 10th ID, earlier said they are still verifying the names of the politicians who have received the letters from the communist group, urging them to pay specific amount of money for the permit-to-campaign (PTC) fees.

The names of the polticians who have received extortion demands were withhold for security reasons, pending the on-going validation process conducted by the 10th ID.

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