PNP looks into increase of election violence PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 28 October 2010 15:31

The Philippine National Police (PNP) hierarchy is now making a study on the increase of the number of election-related violence in connection with last Monday’s barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) polls.

PNP Deputy Chief for Operations Director Benjamin Belarmino, however, noted the lower number of casualties reported for this year’s polls compared to 2007 barangay elections.

Belarmino said that data culled by the PNP showed that only 70 election-related violent incidents (ERVIs) were recorded in 2007 compared to 78 this year since the start of the election period last September 25.

“We have higher incidents now. So we are studying why the increase,” said Belarmino, who also heads the PNP’s Task Force HOPE (honest, orderly and peaceful elections) 2010-Bravo.

Belarmino, however, pointed out that the 78 election-related incidents recorded for this year’s barangay and SK polls only led to 39 people killed while 14 others were wounded. In 2007, the 70 ERVIs resulted in 72 casualties.

The PNP official expressed belief that the increase in the number of election-related incidents was a result of the classification of all incidents related to the elections, regardless if there were casualties or none, as election-related incidents. Before, only violent incidents or those that result to injury or death are classified as ERVIs.

Belarmino attributed the smooth holding of the barangay and SK elections to the massive deployment made by the PNP in coordination with the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) under the supervision of the Commission on Elections (COMELEC).

”We have to utilize all our resources specifically our human resources. We deployed almost all our personnel except those doing administrative works,” said Belarmino.

The PNP deployed 110,000 of its 135,000 personnel to polling centers to maintain order during the actual voting on Monday.