National Counter-Terrorism Action Group

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National Counter-Terrorism Action Group
Pambansang Lupon ng Pagsasagawa Laban sa Terorismo
Agency overview
Formed November 27, 2007
Jurisdiction Government of the Philippines
Agency executives PDG Arturo Lomibao
MGEN Fernando Mesa
Parent agency Anti-Terrorism Council

The National Counter-Terrorism Action Group (NACTAG) (Filipino: Pambansang Lupon ng Pagsasagawa Laban sa Terorismo) (PLPLT) was formed on November 27, 2007, with its existence announced to the public on November 29, 2007.[1] It is an counter-terrorism body under the Anti-Terrorism Council.[1] NACTAG is under the direct command of the National Security Advisor.[2]

History[edit]

After its formation on November 27, 2007, and the announcement of its establishment on November 29, 2007,[1] the Group was trained by the RP-UK Crisis Management Assistance Program, in cooperation with the British Embassy. The training programme was revealed to the public in January 2008.[3] Former Philippine National Police chief, Arturo Lomibao, was appointed as the group's first chief officer.[4][5]

The NACTAG held its first anti-terrorist exercises at the Light Railway Transit-2 station in Cubao and at the Metro Rail Transit North Avenue Station to prepare authorities for future terrorist attacks after a bombing was reported at Iligan City.[6]

Lomibao kept his position in 2009 when a cabinet shuffle took place.[7] There was an accusation that Lomibao's appointment is a sign of cronyism from ex-President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.[8]

NACTAG was later renamed as National Counter Terrorism Unit (NCTU) under the leadership of former army general Fernando Mesa. Its role was expanded to cover coordination, intelligence and operational control of strategic counterterrorism operations. Apart from specially-trained civilian operatives and operations support staff, the Unit retained operationally controlled units from special operations units of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Philippine National Police, Bureau of Fire Protection and Philippine Coast Guard. The Unit is known to have utilized TAVOR CTAR Carbines and Jericho pistols.

NCTU also collaborates with Department of Transportation and Communications' Office for Transportation Security, the Anti-Money Laundering Council and the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency. The Unit also spearheaded Chemical Biological Radiological Nuclear and Explosives (CBRNE) initiatives, most notable of which is the National CBRNE Protocol Manual, in collaboration with the Office of Civil Defense and the Department of Health's Health Emergency Management Staff.

Mandate[edit]

The mandate of the NACTAG is to be "involved in the actual investigation, in case of a terrorist attack, and in providing prosecutors with “enough evidence and witnesses so that the cases will stand in court in accordance with Republic Act (RA) 9372" or the Human Security Act."[1][9]

Lineage of Chiefs[edit]

  • PDG Arturo Lomibao PNP(Retired)
  • MGEN Fernando Mesa AFP(Retired)

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Lira Dalangin-Fernandez (2007-11-28). "Palace forms new anti-terror group". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Archived from the original on 2013-06-18. Retrieved 2013-06-18. 
  2. ^ "(Update) Ex-PNP chief appointed to security council". GMA Network. 2008-10-29. Archived from the original on 2013-06-18. Retrieved 2013-06-18. 
  3. ^ "Local police get one-of-a-kind British training". The Manila Times. 2008-01-30. Archived from the original on 2012-01-07. Retrieved 2009-06-30. 
  4. ^ "Former police chief Lomibao named head of anti-terror unit". Philippine Daily Inquirer. 2007-11-29. Archived from the original on 2012-01-07. Retrieved 2009-06-30. 
  5. ^ Joel Guinto (2008-10-28). "Ex-national police chiefs to NSC, OP". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Archived from the original on 2013-06-18. Retrieved 2013-06-18. 
  6. ^ "Anti-terror exercises held at train stations". GMA Network. 2008-01-28. Archived from the original on 2013-06-18. Retrieved 2013-06-18. 
  7. ^ TJ Burgonio and Christine Avendaño (2009-01-22). "Remonde is new press secretary". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Archived from the original on 2013-06-18. Retrieved 2013-06-18. 
  8. ^ "The President’s men". Philippine Daily Inquirer. 2009-01-28. Archived from the original on 2013-06-18. Retrieved 2013-06-18. 
  9. ^ "Lomibao heads new anti-terrorism action group". Zambo Times. 2007-12-01. Archived from the original on 2013-06-18. Retrieved 2013-06-18.