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Duterte warns politicians against forming private armies

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By Genalyn Kabiling

As part of his commitment to ensure peaceful and credible elections next year, President Duterte has warned politicians against forming their private armies.

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte (KING RODRIGUEZ/Presidential Photo / MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte (KING RODRIGUEZ/Presidential Photo / MANILA BULLETIN FILE PHOTO)

The President said he would deploy the military and police to dismantle any private armed groups created by candidates in next year’s elections.

“You start to have an — a private army, one morning you will see me in front of your house and I will ask you to go down,” Duterte said before an assembly of mayors from Visayas in Cebu City last Tuesday night.

“Ang kalaban mo niyan, ang Armed Forces pati Police. Tutal ako, I don’t need any loyalty, not even with the military and the police. Do not nurture any loyalty to me. Stick to what it represents, the Constitution,” he added.

The President has renewed his vow to ensure the 2019 midterm elections would be clean and credible. He has pledged that there would be proper counting of ballots next year.

“I assure you there will be no partisan politics. I will guarantee it all throughout the Philippines that the voting will be done fairly, clean and honest election, walang partido-partido,” he said.

“Your votes will be counted and it will be counted correctly. That I can assure you for everybody,” he added.

Just a few days ago, the President said he intends to revive the “Alunan doctrine” that limits the number of bodyguards of government officials to keep the peace during the election period.

Under the doctrine introduced by former Interior and Local Government Rafael Alunan II during the Ramos administration, having more than three bodyguards already constitutes a private army.

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