MANILA—The alleged profiling of Muslim students in Metro Manila by the Philippine National Police (PNP) was misinterpreted, the country's top cop said Saturday.
" 'Yung nangyari sa Manila sa mga Muslim na-misinterpret. I will be reminding my units to be very careful. A lot of people are overly sensitive [about] a lot of things," PNP chief Gen. Archie Gamboa told reporters in a press briefing.
"Everybody now is watchful. This is now a wake-up call. All directives should be clearly stated para walang misinterpretation."
On Wednesday, the Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) revealed a memorandum by the PNP seeking an updated list of Muslim students from high school, colleges and universities in the capital region.
The group condemned the memo, saying that schools should not allow themselves to be utilized for “such or any other counterinsurgency measures by the PNP.”
"These students and our schools have nothing to do with the government's wars and, therefore, should not be used as avenues in the furtherance of such. It should remain zones of peace, free of police and military intrusion," ACT national chairperson Joselyn Martinez said.
Metro Manila Police chief Maj. Gen Debold Sinas, however, said the memorandum only seeks statistics of a police center in a Muslim community in order to conduct interventions and programs for the sector.
Shortly after, Sinas ordered to recall the memorandum after drawing flak.
Gamboa said the PNP "will be observant [of] the 1987 Constitution." — With a report from Micaella Ilao, ABS-CBN News