NPOC urged to include Army as BPOC member

BOKOD, Benguet September 27 – The Cordillera Regional Development Council (RDC-CAR) and the Regional Peace and Order Council (RPOC-CAR) passed a joint resolution requesting the National Peace and Order Council (NPOC) to amend the provisions of Executive Order (EO) No. 366, series of 1996 as amended by EO No. 773, series of 2009 defining the composition of the Barangay Peace and Order Committee (BPOC) to include the Philippine Army as one of the regular members.

The RDC-CAR and RPOC joint resolution stated that the 5th Infantry Division of the Philippine Army based in Gamo, Isabela signified its intention to be a member of the peace and order councils in the barangay level as it provides security in the implementation of projects, especially infrastructure projects, within its area of operation as part of its mandate.

The resolution noted that the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is a member of the peace and order councils such as the national, provincial, and municipal levels, thus, the inclusion of the AFP in the barangay level to complete its active participation in the overall security of the barangays as well as other peace and order interventions that could be implemented by the military to spare the countryside from unwanted violence incidents.

Based on the provisions of EO 366, series of 1996, every barangay is mandated to create their own barangay peace and order committee as the implementing arm of the city or municipal peace and order councils in the barangay level which shall be composed of the Punong Barangay as chairperson the chairman of the Sangguniang Kabataan, a member of the Lupon Tagapamayapa, a barangay tanod, a public school teacher to be designated by a school principal or school head teacher, a representative of the inter-faith group, a senior citizen, at least 3 members of barangay-based anti-crime or neighbourhood watch groups or a non-government organization representative well-known in the community and a PNP officer to be designated by the chief of police of the corresponding city or municipality.

Section 3 of EO 773, series of 2009 states that one of the duties and functions of the sub-national councils is to monitor the livelihood and infrastructure development programs in remote rural areas and areas populated by indigenous peoples as a counter measure to the communist rebels 'agitate, arouse, organize and mobilize' strategy and ideological, political and organizational works.

The resolution added that the peace and order councils were recognized to contribute to the mandate of the National Peace and Order Council (NPOC) to effectively respond to peace and order problems, to coordinate the implementation of peace and order plans and to provide a forum for inter-disciplinary dialogue and deliberation of major issues and problems affecting peace and order.

Section 116 of Republic Act (RA) 7160 otherwise known as the Local Government Code of the Philippines and EO 773, series of 2009, calls for the further reorganization of the peace and order councils and mandates the organizations of the peace and order councils at the province city and municipal levels as sub-national councils.

The approved resolution will be subsequently transmitted to the NPOC after the same shall have been signed by the responsible officers leading the council.

By Dexter A. See

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