CITY OF SAN FERNANDO -- The Pampanga Police Provincial Office (PPPO) said Tuesday that at least 62 barangays in the province have been identified as "critical" or areas of concern in relation to the upcoming barangay elections in October.
Senior Superintendent Oscar Albayalde, acting police provincial director, revealed this figure during a command conference attended by mayors, chiefs of police and concerned barangay captains.
"Actually noong 2010, mayroon tayong 144 barangays sa Pampanga na may problema sa peace and order at may naitalang election-related incidents," he said.
However, Agbayalde noted that after validation, only 62 out of the 144 barangays in 2010 are identified as critical areas this coming elections.
He stated that most of these barangays have problems in peace and order, particularly on the issue of insurgency in their localities.
The top police official stressed that the Philippine National Police, in close coordination with the Commission on Elections (Comelec), is all set in ensuring the safe conduct of elections this October 28.
"Nakikipagtulungan po tayo sa Comelec upang matiyak natin na magiging tahimik ang pagsasagawa ng nalalapit na eleksiyon," he said.
Meanwhile, the police office claimed that crime volume in Pampanga from August 2012 to 2013 has been reduced by at least 1.79 percent, from 1,673 crimes in 2012 to 1,643 this year.
"Bumaba po ang crime volume natin ngayon kumpara noong nakaraang taon. Magandang indication ito para sa probinsiya ng Pampanga," said PPO Operation branch head Superintendent Rodney Raymund Baloyo.
Also present during the command conference were Governor Lilia Pineda, Board Member Rosve Henson, Mayors Edgar Flores (Minalin), Rommel Concepcion (Sta. Ana), Jun Tetangco (Apalit), Emmanuel Alejandrino (Arayat), Dan Torres (Guagua), Eddie Guerrero (Floridablanca), Yolly Pineda (Sta. Rita), Mylene Cayabyab-Pineda (Lubao), Romy Pecson (Magalang), Dan Guinto (Masantol), Joselito Naguit (Sto. Tomas), Vice Mayor Normita Evangelista among others.