More cops deployed to secure polls, ‘Undas’

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Thursday, October 24, 2013


THE Davao Police Regional Office (PRO) deployed on Thursday close to 900 additional policemen all over the region to ensure a peaceful and orderly barangay election on October 28.

PRO Regional Director Wency Pascual said these security personnel were pulled out from various offices of the regional headquarters to augment the city and provincial police personnel who will secure the barangay elections and All Saints' and All Souls' Day (Undas) from terrorists and other criminal elements.

Of the 877 additional police personnel, 239 were deployed to Davao City Police Office (DCPO), 102 to Davao Oriental Provincial Police Office (Doppo), 124 to Davao del Norte PPO, 145 to Compostela Valley PPO, and 75 to Davao del Sur PPO.

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There were also 166 personnel deployed to National Support Units (NSUs), such as Highway Patrol Group (HPG) and Criminal Investigations and Detection Group (CIDG), among others, and 26 to regional headquarters.

"We have a total of 877 personnel deployed in the region hanggang sa All Saints' Day and All Souls' Day na yan. They will return to the regional headquarters after Undas. As far as we're concern, we are peaceful and we are ready for the election," Pascual said in an interview after the send-off ceremony at Camp Quintin Merecido in Catitipan, Davao City.

Inspector Jed Clamor, PRO-Davao spokesperson, said they have monitored a total of 178 areas of concern in the region -- 11 in Davao City, 26 in Davao del Norte, 28 in Davao del Sur, 12 in Davao Oriental, and 101 in Compostela Valley.

"In Compostela Valley, we have an agreement with the members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) that areas where presence of communist rebels was reported will be handled by military, while most of the election duties will be handled by the police," Pascual said.

In Davao City, some 2,000 personnel including troops from Task Force Davao and additional troops from the Army's 10th Infantry Division, City Public Safety Command Center, and other government agencies will secure the metropolis during the election and Undas.

Chief Inspector Vianney Ross Lagundi, chief of the DCPO's Police Community Relations, said among areas of concern in the city are the districts of Paquibato, Marilog, and Baguio, and Poblacion areas, particularly Barangay 23-C.

During Undas, Chief Inspector Alfredo Baloran earlier said there will be more than 1,000 police personnel to be deployed in 23 private and public cemeteries, churches, public places and all entry and exit points in Davao City starting on October 30.

Additional police personnel will also be fielded in various areas in the city from October 30 to November 3.

"Sa police lang yan... hindi pa kasama dyan yung sa random checkpoints and patrols natin, iba rin yan. The Task Force Davao had also deployed its troops so marami-rami yung mag secure sa city. We are going to implement the maximum security," Baloran said.

Senior Superintendent Gregorio Pimentel, chief of the Highway Patrol Group (HPG), said that in line with the Undas, he already instructed his personnel to place road assistance centers in all entry points in Davao Region.

Among the cemeteries that have major deployment are: Davao Memorial Park, Wireless Public Cemetery, San Pedro Memorial Park, Forest Lake and Orchard Memorial Park, and Manila Memorial Park.

Baloran also reminded the public to follow rules during Undas. He said carrying of bladed weapons and firearms, karaoke/radio, liquors are prohibited, including smoking and gambling at the cemeteries and memorial parks.

He said those who will be caught will be penalized.

Baloran said there will be a 24-hour public assistance center mounted in the private and public cemeteries to avoid the entry of those prohibited items. He said violators will be endorsed to police station for investigation and filing of charges.

Colonel Casiano Monilla, TFD commander, also ensured that police and military personnel have already established their active defense against communists, visibility operations, and foot and mobile patrols in different areas of the city.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on October 25, 2013.

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