MEMBERS of the 160,000-strong Philippine National Police have been ordered to launch 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 Christmas season, the PNP leadership said yesterday.
PNP chief Director General Ronald ‘Bato’ M. dela Rosa has ordered National Capital Region Police Office director Chief Superintendent Oscar D. Albayalde to further step-up their anti-crime and anti-terror campaign in Metro Manila in the wake of last week’s foiled bomb plot along Roxas Boulevard in Manila.
Dela Rosa said that police are now conducting mobile and random checkpoints in Metro Manila and other metropolitan and highly-urbanized centers.
However, he maintained that the checkpoints won’t be fixed or stationary since President Duterte has ordered the dismantling of those checkpoints amid charges they were being used by some rogues in uniform to extort money from civilians.
The PNP chief said that with the Terror Alert Level 3 already raised, the public should expert much stronger checks in the streets under the PNP Oplan: Sita. “Expect some raids to be conducted by our security forces on suspected terrorist lairs,” he said.
“We’re worried and that’s why we react accordingly but there’s no cause for alarm. I’m advising the public to be vigilant, to be cautious but don’t be alarmed, let’s enjoy Christmas,” he said.
Albayalde has called on the public to maintain their vigilance this Yuletide season particularly in reporting the presence of 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 secure Christmas.
PNP spokesman Senior Supt. Dionardo B. Carlos said they are also ensuring the 100 percent attendance of all policemen in their respective units and offices and make them available to patrol the streets and further minimize criminality during the Yuletide period.
“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. The PNP will be going all out to prevent the loss of life and limb and damage to property due to the traditional practice of using banned firecrackers and other pyrotechnics and more importantly, indiscriminate firing of guns. There will be no exemptions here and all violators will be immediately accosted, jailed and charged in court,” Gen. De la Rosa added.