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PNP chief says no more warnings vs. violators under martial law-like ECQ

Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Police General Archie Francisco Gamboa on Monday said if the national government would decide to enforce a martial law-like implementation of the community quarantine, authorities will no longer issue warnings against violators. 

"Kung ito ay matutuloy, it will really be full implementation of the law and wala na tayong warning, diretso na tayo sa aresto," Gamboa said in a radio interview. 

"So kung talagang tutuluyan ito, we can charge them of so many violations existing ngayon [against] Bayanihan Act No. 11332 then meron pa 'yung Revised Penal Code. Siguro magpakita dapat ang publiko na mag-behave sila para hindi ito matuloy," Gamboa said.

Earlier, President Rodrigo Duterte said he already directed the police and the military to be prepared in enforcing social distancing and curfew among the public as residents continue to violate quarantine guidelines. He branded it as similar to martial law.

Gamboa earlier said the police organization was ready if ever Duterte decides to let security forces take over in this period of health crisis. 

The PNP chief, however, promised to observe and respect human rights in enforcing rules and regulations of the quarantine which is expected to last until April 30. 

Duterte has no decision yet if he will lift the ECQ or extend it. 

So far, the Philippines has 6,259 confirmed cases, with 572 recoveries and 409 deaths. —KG, GMA News