News Release

PBBM OKs creation of task force to maintain peace, security in Negros

President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. has issued an administrative order creating a special task force tasked to maintain peace and order and suppress threats to safety and security in Negros Island.

Administrative Order No. 6, signed on April 3, directed the task force to “prevent the spread and escalation of violence elsewhere in the Philippines and to maintain peace and order in Negros Island, with due regard to the fundamental civil and political rights of the people.”

The AO was issued in light of the killing of Negros Oriental Governor Roel Degamo at his residence in Pamplona, Negros Oriental, where eight other civilians were slain and 17 were left wounded.

The task force, called “DEGAMO,” will be chaired by the secretary of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and co-chaired by the chiefs of the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Department of National Defense (DND).

The task force commanders include the chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP), the chief of sraff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), and the director of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) is tasked to extend emergency relief assistance to the families of the victims, while the Department of Health (DOH) shall provide psychological rehabilitation to affected individuals.

Meanwhile, the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas (PAFV) is ordered to coordinate with the task force “with the aim of enlisting the full support of all stakeholders.”

Under AO No. 6, the task force will have the power to coordinate and rationalize the efforts of concerned government agencies and instrumentalities to “ensure a whole-of-government approach in the prevention, investigation, prosecution and punishment of violence in Negros Island.”

It is further tasked to intensify campaign against private armed groups and loose firearms. #