Capitol heightens watch vs robbery

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Thursday, August 21, 2014


THE Negros Occidental Provincial Capitol in Bacolod City is observing heightened security alert to deter robbery incidents after the city halls of Escalante and Bago lost cash and equipment recently.

Capitol security supervisor Venchito Magalona said that aside from the presence of security guards, an augmentation force from the Philippine National Police is also patrolling the seat of the provincial government.

Closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras are also in place at the offices of the Capitol especially at the Provincial Treasurer's Office.

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Magalona said that during Saturdays and Sundays, and holidays, employees doing overtime are advised to secure office orders from their respective department heads.

The coming in and out of people doing transactions at the Capitol is also closely monitored through log books, he said.

Magalona added that a tight security measure is observed at the Cash Division even if the daily collections are deposited in the bank everyday.

Security alert is also being heightened in the nearby Provincial Administration Center, which houses several department offices, including the Provincial Planning and Development Office, the General Services Office, Office of the Provincial Agriculturist, Provincial Health Office, among others.

Magalona also said that Capitol security personnel are on tight watch in the evening since government-issued vehicles are parked at the Capitol compound during night time, Saturdays and Sunday, and holidays.

Last Sunday, P500,000 worth of cameras and other gadgets were carted away by unidentified robbers from the Bago City Mayor's Office.

Mayor Ramon Torres said the robbery was discovered around 7 a.m. that day, and several City Hall employees and casual workers are now being investigated.

Only one security guard is assigned at the City Hall premises, which doesn’t have closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras.

In Escalante City last month, robbers took P2 million in cash and checks from the vault of the Cash Division.

The National Bureau of Investigation is still investigating the incident believed to be an inside job.

Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on August 21, 2014.

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