The government on Friday, June 16, called on the public to be part of the security posture in preventing terrorist groups from wreaking more havoc in other areas in Mindanao and throughout the country.
In line with its objective to put an end to terrorism, Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Spokesperson Brigadier General Restituto Padilla Jr. issued a call to Filipino citizens to help achieve this goal by being more vigilant and watchful of their own surroundings.
“As we have been reiterating so many times, the populace has to understand that providing security in every part of the Philippines is a shared responsibility among the populace, the military, the police, and other security partners for that matter,” he said during the regular Mindanao Hour press briefing in Malacañang.
He also called on Congress to pass significant measures that would enable the country’s Armed Forces to protect the people’s security from all forms of threat.
Padilla meanwhile urged government officials and private individuals who wish to provide aid to displaced families from Marawi to channel all relief assistance to the local government instead of going to the conflict areas to distribute relief items themselves.
“We have not been allowing anyone else other than local government and other officials to come in to Marawi because of the conflict that is ongoing,” Padilla said.
“We have also requested all those who have been giving relief goods to channel the relief goods through the local government who can then distribute it in the evacuation centers, without them going into the danger zone,” he added.
Padilla meanwhile said the terror group does not have enough capacity to sow terror as they did in Marawi City.
“I can tell you, they don’t have the capacity to do what they did in Marawi anymore. Their capabilities have been significantly degraded, and they have specifically targeted Marawi to sow terror, wreak havoc, possibly kidnap people, destroy homes, schools, and what have you,” he said.
“Any kind of action of that extent will not happen in Iligan and Cagayan de Oro. And we are taking up proactive measures to ensure that even an attempt to sow confusion, sow terror in these areas by small actions will be prevented,” he added.
Meanwhile, Padilla noted that consultations with various stakeholders are being headed by the newly-formed “Joint Task Group Ranao” in preparation for Marawi’s rehabilitation, recovery, and reconstruction and rebuilding phase.
“This consultation will continue on until the preparation for — once we get to the end of hostilities is achieved and will make way and pave the way for the entry of an assessment team to conduct a survey of the damage and the requirements that will be needed to rebuild and reconstruct Marawi again,” Padilla said.
For his part, Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella welcomed the arrest of Maute bomber Mohammad Noaim Maute, alias “Abu Jadid,” who was arrested in Cagayan de Oro Thursday morning.
“This, we consider a positive development in our campaign to end rebellion in Marawi to flush out evil forces and to bring peace to the island of Mindanao,” Abella said.###PND