A TOTAL of 3,251 security forces were deployed on Monday, May 6, by the Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office (Nocppo) in different areas all over the province for the May 13 elections.
The sendoff ceremony was led Monday by Police Brigadier General Jesus Cambay Jr., deputy regional director for administration of Police Regional Office (PRO) in Western University, and Police Colonel Romeo Baleros, Nocppo director held at Nocppo headquarters in Bacolod City.
Of the total number, 1,477 police came from the existing personnel of Nocppo.
There were also augmentation forces from the Bacolod City Police Office with 166, 212 from Regional Personnel Holding and Accounting Unit, 396 from the Negros Occidental Provincial Mobile Force Company and 1,000 from the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).
The provincial headquarters also provided 57 vehicles, 41 motorcycles, 2,874 long and short firearms, and 328 radio communication handset.
Cambay, in his speech, said the regional office is confident that the local police is prepared for the elections.
The region provided Negros with enough personnel to secure the electoral process, he added.
He said the security forces should achieve the following objectives such as no harassment or raid of municipal police stations, no ambush, no liquidation, no major incidents, and no election-related violence starting Monday until the election period is finished.
“While we perform our duties we should be aware of the police operational procedures and election guidelines,” Cambay said.
Cambay, who also delivered the message of Brigadier General John Bulalacao, regional director of PRO- Western Visayas, said the police and the military must be at the forefront to secure the safety of the people during the election.
"Matagal na tayong naghanda, nailatag na natin ang strategies (We have long been prepared for this, and we already have laid our strategies) to avoid problems like the launching of a campaign against loose firearms, strengthening of support with the AFP, and intensifying of monitoring against criminal groups," he said.
Despite the risk factors, Bulalacao said the police forces are ready to serve and protect the people.
"We are raising the bar of the security with the deployment of about 90 percent of the police personnel," he said.
Bulalacao reminded the security forces to be fit both in body and mind, focus on their goals and to never fail to pray.
For his part, Balero said the province is aiming to have a peaceful and successful elections, with no major incidents.
With the support of other counterparts we can perform our duty well. We can maintain peace and security by enforcing the law without fear and favor, he added.
"We are ready to face the challenges, with the guidance of the Almighty," he said.
Meanwhile, Brigadier General Benedict Arevalo, commander of 303rd Infantry Brigade of Philippine Army, in his message, said the military expressed its support with the police to ensure an orderly, honest, and peaceful elections.
"We will assure you that all our combat and security operations will be followed," he added.
He also reminded them to remain apolitical and neutral.