Last week, the Philippine National Police launched the “PNP Barangayanihan” project in response to the famine brought on by the pandemic.
According to Police Brig. Gen. Harris Fama, deputy director for police-community relations of the PNP, they are not competing with the community pantries that have sprung up this month in various parts of the country.
“Hindi naman kami nakikipag-compete. Ang layunin namin ay serbisyo… Long before this pandemic, ginagawa na namin ito,” he said on Teleradyo on Tuesday.
Through the “PNP Barangayanihan,” the police are setting up food banks outside their stations.
According to Fama, the PNP is not against community pantries.
“Wala naman pong problema do’n sa community pantry. Ang ating PNP ay hindi sumasalungat diyan kasi nga nakakatulong ito bagkos in-appreciate namin,” he said.
“Ang hindi lang talaga maganda dito ay ‘yon na nga dadagdagan ng mga papeletos na laban sa ating gobyerno. Hindi na kami papayag diyan,” Fama added.
‘Barangayanihan’ not competing with community pantries: PNP
Meanwhile, National Security Adviser Hermogenes Esperon, Jr. issued a gag order against 2 spokespersons of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) for them not to give statements related to community pantries.
NTF-ELCAC spokespersons Lt. General Antonio Parlade Jr. and Lorraine Badoy received criticisms for allegedly red-tagging or linking people behind community pantries to communist rebels.
“Lest it be misunderstood, they will desist (from) making statements on community pantries,” said Esperon, the vice-chair of NTF-ELCAC.
However, despite this, Parlade called the community pantries “CPP,” also an acronym for the Communist Party of the Philippines.
“I will not make any further comment on the Community Pantry Ph (CPP) but will continue the charge on other NTF related issues,” Parlade said in a Facebook post earlier.
“Im a soldier. I do as Im told. I asked to be replaced earlier on as NTF Spox but NTF wants me to stay put and renewed my designation as NTF spox instead. Now Im told to stand down on the comm pantry issue ONLY so I will heed, as I always do.”