Ex-military chief backs increased police visibility in universities

Arianne Merez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 20 2019 04:15 PM

MANILA - The deployment of more police officers in schools may deter students from joining the communist movement, a former military chief said Tuesday.

Barring police officers from patrolling inside schools would “deprive” the people of security, former military chief of staff and now Presidential Peace Adviser Carlito Galvez said.

“The state police should not be restricted to enforce the law. Kung magkakaroon ng (If there will be) restrictions there is a possibility na magkakaroon ng (that there will be a) security gap,” he told reporters.

Interior Secretary Eduardo Año had said some 1,000 young Filipinos are being recruited by communist rebels every year to become members of the New People's Army or to lead student organizations.

He made the claim after several parents faced a Senate inquiry earlier this month seeking help to get back their children who were allegedly recruited by leftist groups in schools.

Former rebels also shared to lawmakers recruitment methods employed by communists to “convince” unsuspecting youth, as well as “legal fronts” being used in the recruitment process in schools.

In October last year, the military released a list of 18 colleges and universities where leftist groups allegedly recruit members, a move slammed by school officials.