THE 175,000-strong Philippine National Police has launched a massive security measure nationwide including the strict enforcement of the law on firecrackers and other pyrotechnic devices and the ban on indiscriminate firing to ensure the peaceful celebration of the coming Christmas and New Year holidays, top officials announced yesterday.
PNP chief Director General Oscar D. Albayalde has ordered the deployment of more uniformed and plainclothes officers to so-called “soft targets” including shopping malls, transport terminals, airports, hotels, piers and other public areas to curb crime in places where large numbers of people converge during the Christmas season.
These measures are geared at preventing the loss of lives, limb and property.
On orders of the PNP chief, all 17 Police Regional Offices specifically the National Capital Region Police Office headed by Director Guillermo Lorenzo T. Eleazar are also concentrating their campaign against motorcycle-riding suspects or motorbike-riding tandems engaged in robbery-holdups and gun-for-hire activities.
PNP spokesman Chief Superintendent Benigno B. Durana Jr. said all Police Regional Offices have been ordered by Gen. Albayalde to heighten their visibility in the streets to thwart all forms of criminality.
Albayalde has called on the public to maintain their vigilance this Yuletide season particularly against suspicious-looking person, movements and unattended bags and packages in places of huge convergence in the metropolis while assuring the citizenry that all security measures are in place to ensure a safe and secured celebration of the Christmas and New Year holidays in the metropolis.
Under the PNP Oplan ‘Ligtas Paskuhan 2018,’ Durana said that PNP personnel will be deployed in places of worship, malls, markets, commercial areas, business districts, bus terminals, the MRT/LRT stations, seaports, airports, tourist destinations, vital installations and other places of public convergence.
“It is during this time that policemen should be alert and people should see more cops on the street as it is expected that criminals would go around preying on the public,” Gen. Albayalde said.
The PNP is also mobilizing force multipliers composed of Barangay Peacekeeping Action Teams, Barangay Tanod, private security agencies, NGOs and civilian volunteers’ organizations to augment local police units in their security operations
This coming December 30, the country will be marking the 17th anniversary of the infamous Rizal Day bombings in Metro Manila that killed and wounded scores of people. That terror attack was attributed to the Jemaah Islamiyah and rogue Moro Islamic Liberation Front guerrillas.