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SAF men in NBP report to Bato

The spokeswoman of the Philippine National Police-Special Action Force (PNP-SAF) said Thursday that the PNP Special Action Force (SAF) commandos deployed at the National Bilibid Prisons (NBP) in Muntinlupa City will directly report to their commander, Chief Supt. Benjamin Lusad, and to Police Director General Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa, PNP chief.

In a press briefing at Camp Crame, Quezon City, Senior Inspector Jonalyn Malnat, said although the more than 300 SAF commandos will be working with Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) officials/personnel, agents from Philippine Drug
Enforcement Agency (PDEA) and other PNP units, they are still under the direct supervision of Lusad and Dela Rosa.

“We are still under our director and the chief PNP and not on BuCor. We have a chain-of-command that we follow.

Although the SAF personnel were deployed at NBP, it doesn’t mean the SAF director no longer has power on them. We still follow the orders given to us by our commander,” Malnat told reporters.

“If there are operational matters that the BuCor will tell the SAF commandos, this will have to go through our commander,” she added.

On Wednesday, the 320-strong elite SAF took over the security of the NBP. The NBP is under the control and supervision of BuCor, an attached agency of the Department of Justice.

She added that as part of their marching orders, the deployment of SAF personnel to the NBP is primarily for the security aspect of the NBP, specifically the maximum security area.

“The deployment of SAF at the NBP is basically to support the BuCor in terms of security aspect and to stop illegal activities within the NBP. In every move we do, we rely on our director, Chief Supt. Benjamin Lusad,” Malnat said. (Francis T. Wakefield)