PNP reassigns police officers serving as VIP escorts

Security escorts for private individuals removed by PNP

MANILA, Philippines — In a bold move, the Philippine National Police (PNP) has decided to eliminate police officers assigned as security escorts for certain private individuals, emphasizing that it is not the role of policemen to protect VIPs.

PNP chief Gen. Rommel Francisco Marbil expressed his firm stance on the matter, stating that police officers should only provide security to individuals facing validated threats.

“It’s not the job of policemen to give VIP protection to anybody. Our job is to give security to people whose lives are under threat,” Marbil said in an interview over dzBB.

Marbil clarified that the Police Security and Protection Group is the sole PNP unit authorized to offer security to individuals with existing threats. Before receiving police security, an individual must submit a written request to the PNP and provide reasons for needing protection. The PNP will then conduct a validation process to assess the validity of the threat.

The directive to remove security escorts for private individuals came after Marbil personally witnessed a police officer providing security to a Chinese national at a hotel.

“I went to a hotel and this Chinese guy had security who’s even wearing a shirt with PSPG print,” Marbil recounted.

While Marbil, as the top policeman in the country, has officers assigned to his security detail, he emphasized that he carries his personal belongings during official and personal engagements.

On May 18, two Special Action Force (SAF) policemen were apprehended for allegedly working as unauthorized bodyguards in a village in Muntinlupa City. The two officers, along with seven other SAF officials, were relieved from their posts, according to the PNP.

The SAF members reportedly engaged in a physical altercation while providing unauthorized VIP escort services in Ayala Alabang Village.

“This incident has tarnished the reputation of the PNP,” Marbil expressed.

The arrested SAF personnel were originally stationed in Mindanao, and the police were investigating why they were in Metro Manila. Prior to their arrest, residents of the village reported a disturbance involving the two SAF members, leading to their apprehension by the Ayala Alabang police sub-station 5.

Marbil did not disclose the identities of the individuals who received the unauthorized SAF security services, but reports suggested they were Chinese nationals. Investigations into the matter are ongoing.

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