The Philippine Army (PA) deployed its own troops and assets to beef up the security during the first State of the Nation Address (SONA) of President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. at the Batasang Pambansa Complex in Quezon City on Monday, July 25.
Col. Xerxes Trinidad, PA spokesperson, said a civil disturbance management (CDM) platoon, two urban search and rescue (SAR) teams, an ambulance medic team, and a communications van were fielded to help secure the perimeter area where the Commander-in-Chief’s SONA was slated.
The units were supervised by the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Joint Task Force National Capital Region (JTF-NCR) security contingent.
The PA also dedicated an ambulance medic team, 10 explosive ordnance disposal teams, three K9 teams, and an armored vehicle to bolster the forces of the Presidential Security Group (PSG) and the Philippine National Police (PNP).
No threat was observed as of 12 noon although security was tighter especially after a gun attack during a graduation ceremony at the Ateneo de Manila University in Quezon City on Sunday which killed three people.
Trinidad said the PA closely coordinated with the PNP and Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) to maintain peace and order in the area.
“As government administrators come and go, the Philippine Army, as part of the AFP, will comply with the instructions of the Commander-in-Chief to secure the peace in the country and support the law enforcement operations to pave the way for the development of the nation,” he noted.
Around 22,000 security personnel led by the PNP were utilized for Marcos Jr.’s SONA, and told to observe maximum tolerance when dealing with street rallyists.