MANILA President Rodrigo Duterte has signed an executive order (EO) which sets new guidelines on the detail of the police and military personnel to civilian offices and officials, in an effort to maximize their utilization and enable them to perform better.
Under Executive Order (EO) 98 signed on Nov. 29, Duterte sees the need to "rationalize and update the rules" governing the detail of personnel of both the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) to erstwhile and incumbent government officials who need assistance or protection.
Currently, EOs 41 and 207 signed in 1966 and 2016, respectively, allow military and police personnel to serve as security detail.
EO 98, however, repeals EOs 41 and 207 to pave the way for the promulgation of new rules and regulations with regard to the detail of AFP and PNP personnel to government offices and officials.
Under the new EO, the President can have an aidedecamp, military assistant, and military administrative assistant, "in such number and of such grades as he may determine."
The EO defines an aidedecamp as "a commissioned officer of the AFP, in the active service, selected for the purpose of providing general assistance to entitled government officials and foreign military or civilian dignitaries."
The EO provides that an aidedecamp, in such number and grades that may be determined and approved by the head of the Defense department, can be detailed to the Vice President, visiting foreign military or civilian dignitaries, the Defense Secretary, and other government officials.
A military assistant is referred to as "a commissioned officer of the AFP with a field grade rank in the active service, or in the appropriate rank of Technical Service of the AFP, detailed to a civilian office and/or official for the purpose of rendering professional/technical advice and assistance on military matters," according to EO 98.
EO 98 also permits the Vice President; the Senate President; the House Speaker; the Executive Secretary; the Senate and House chairs on national defense and security; the National Security Adviser; the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency director general; and other government officials to have a military assistant upon Defense Secretary's approval.
The EO likewise defines a military administrative assistant as a "noncommissioned officer of the AFP with the rank of Staff Sergeant, Technical Sergeant, and Master Sergeant, or its equivalent in the Philippine Navy, in the active service of the AFP, detailed to a civilian office and/or official for the purpose of rendering administrative assistance on military matters."
Under EO 98, government officials are allowed to have a military administrative assistant, as long as they secure the nod of the Defense secretary.
Former presidents are entitled to military assistants, military administrative assistants, and protective security, in such combination as he may determine, "but in no case exceeding 12 personnel."
A protective security is a personnel of the PNP, primarily from the Police Security and Protection Group, detailed to civilian government offices, officials or individuals for the purpose of providing security and ensuring their safety, the EO states.
The former president's spouse or widow, as the case may be, are allowed to have military administrative assistants and protective security, in such combination as the entitled individual may determine, "but in no case exceeding six personnel."
"No military personnel shall be detailed or assigned to a private individual unless such detail or assignment is approved by the President, upon the recommendation of the DND Secretary," EO 98 read.
"Except for the detail of military personnel to the President, all initial detail of military personnel to civilian offices and/or officials, extensions of the period thereof, and the termination of such detail, shall be upon evaluation and recommendation of the Chief of Staff of the AFP and approval of the DND Secretary," it added.
EO 98 also authorizes the police's security detail to entitled government officials and persons, "in accordance with existing issuances, guidelines and procedures governing the availment of protective security, which may be amended or supplemented by the PNP from time to time, subject to the approval of the DILG (Department of the Interior and Local Government)."
All detail of PNP personnel as protective security to government offices, officials, and private individuals allowed to get protection will be approved by the PNP director general.
"Taking into consideration the professional growth of the personnel concerned, the initial detail of military personnel shall be for a period of one year, unless earlier terminated. For exceptional and highly justifiable reasons, such detail may be extended to a maximum period of three years," according to the EO 98.
"The duration of detail of PNP personnel as Protective Security shall be governed by the rules and regulations for the availment of Protective Security issued by the PNP, and approved by the DILG," it added.
EO 98 does not apply to the detail of military personnel to Philippine diplomatic missions abroad, and those under the Presidential Security Group.
The EO, which takes effect immediately, directs the DND, the PNP, and the DILG to issue separate rules and regulations for the implementation of the Order, including quotas or deployment limits, within a month from its effectivity.
Such rules and regulations are meant to ensure the "rational, judicious and optimum utilization of AFP and PNP personnel".
Palace released a copy of Duterte's order on Tuesday, December 3. (PNA)
Source: Philippines News Agency