AFP now on red alert, launches election monitoring center for May 9 polls

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“The AFP NEMC will work in tandem with focused military operations, stakeholders engagement, and intelligence operations to deter all forms of threats to the conduct of the elections,” the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) said in a news release on Tuesday (May 3).

Metro Manila (Philippines) — The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is now on red alert all throughout the country in preparation for the elections on Monday (May 9).

As part of its heightened alert status, the AFP launched its National Election Monitoring Center (NEMC) in Camp Aquinaldo on Tuesday (May 3).

The NEMC will be the monitoring center of the AFP for all its operations in the upcoming national and local polls. It shall keep an eye on election preparations, the actual polls and the canvassing process, as well as cases of election-related violence (ERV) in hotspot areas.

Related: PNP updates watchlist for 2016 polls

AFP Deputy Public Affairs Chief Frank Sayson said the AFP, as a deputized agency of the Commission on Elections (Comelec), is ready to assist the poll body in conducting secure and peaceful elections.

Under COMELEC Resolution 10021, the AFP is deputized to perform election-related functions to ensure “free, orderly, honest, peaceful, and credible elections.”

“The AFP NEMC will work in tandem with focused military operations, stakeholders engagement, and intelligence operations to deter all forms of threats to the conduct of the elections,” the AFP said in a news release on Tuesday.

Related: Bomb threats on election day loom over Mindanao power grid

Sayson said the Comelec also requested AFP to help in the transport of vote-counting machines (VCMs) from Pag-asa Island in the disputed South China Sea. This is still being studied by the AFP, Sayson added.

High-ranking police officer relieved for alleged partisan activities

Meanwhile, despite repeated warnings for uniformed personnel to avoid taking sides in the elections, Chief Supt. Ronald Dela Rosa, the brigade commander of the Philippine National Police (PNP)’s Reactionary Standby Support Force (RSSF), was relieved from his post for allegedly being partisan.

Watch: AFP, PNP vow to remain non-partisan

The RSSF consists of over 3,000 policemen who will be deployed in different places that will be needing augmentation forces.

Authorities noticed that some of Dela Rosa’s posts on social media favor a particular presidential candidate.

PNP Deputy Director General Danilo Constantino said the police are now investigating possible administrative charges against Dela Rosa based on the latter’s Facebook posts.

Related: PNP asks generals to explain alleged meet with Roxas' camp

Section 2 of the 1987 Constitution states: "No officer or employee in the civil service shall engage, directly or indirectly, in any electioneering or partisan political campaign."

Those found guilty of electioneering will be punished with up to six month suspension for the first offense and dismissal from public service for the second offense, under the Civil Service Commission (CSC)'s Revised Rules on Administrative Cases in the Civil Service.

Dela Rosa was replaced by Chief Supt. Elmo Sarona.

CNN Philippines' Gerg Cahiles reported from Camp Aguinaldo.