To PNP, AFP: Shift to Proactive Stance to Stop MILF Threat

Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson called on the Philippine National Police and the Armed Forces of the Philippines Tuesday to take a proactive approach in preventing a repeat of the Bloody Monday attack by the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. 

Lacson, who served as PNP chief when the Estrada administration managed to make headway against the MILF threat, said this is part of a three-pronged strategy to head off the threat of another MILF attack.

“The AFP should change its defensive and reactive stance such that it responds only after the MILF attacks. I hope that at this time, the AFP and PNP would have planned an offensive to uproot and destroy once and for all the military infrastructure of the MILF, if not degrade their military capability,” he said.

He also said that while lawmakers are inclined to grant the AFP a supplemental budget for their operations against the MILF threat, they also want a proper accounting of where the funds will go.

Lacson said the last thing senators and congressmen want is to be in the dark on where and how millions of pesos in taxpayers’ money will be spent.

“If the AFP needs a supplemental budget from Congress, it is proper that we should grant their request. However, they must explain well not only how they will use the funds, but also how they used their past funding,” he said.

The third part of the proactive stance, he said, is for both the PNP and AFP to beef up intelligence operations so they will no longer be taken by surprise if the MILF or any other threat group strikes.

“Authorities should beef up their intelligence gathering so they will not be taken by surprise, and we can prevent the slaughter of innocent civilians and soldiers in the process,” he said.

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