THE Police Regional Office (PRO) in Central Visayas will deploy 5,000 personnel during the Sinulog grand parade and the 51st International Eucharistic Congress activities.
Senior Supt. Rey Lyndon Lawas said 3,000 to 4,000 police officers, including augmentation from other police units, will be deployed during the Sinulog activities.
Lawas, the PRO Central Visayas officer-in-charge deputy director for operations, said augmentation forces will arrive in Cebu City on Thursday.
The personnel will increase to 5,000 during the start of the IEC by the end of this month. They will be housed in the Cebu International Convention Center in Mandaue City.
The Aviation Security Unit (ASU)-Central Visayas is also asking for augmentation from the PRO Central Visayas because they only have 36 men, and they need to deploy more officers because of the influx of balikbayans who will watch the Sinulog and join the IEC.
Aside from deploying more cops, Senior Superintendent Joselito Salido, ASU Central Visayas chief, said they are securing the airport in Lapu-Lapu City with undercover operatives and K9 units. Criminology interns will also help them.
Salido said his personnel are not allowed to file for vacation leave during the Sinulog and IEC activities.
Lawas said the augmentation personnel during the Sinulog will continue their duties for the Sinulog.
“Sa akong tan-aw dili na na sila makauli, pero maka-relax pa sila kay sa Jan. 19 gamay pa man ang security nga kinahanglanon (As I see it, they can no longer go home, but they can relax because there is not much security needed on the 19th),” he said.
The police official said they will tap the help of the military and other organizations in managing the crowd.
He said no major untoward incidents happened during the initial activities of Sinulog.
“We are very happy with that, though we will not be contented. We will not rest,” he said.
With the new leadership in the Department of Education (DepEd) in Cebu City, Acting Mayor Edgardo Labella hopes that the two offices can already discuss the proposal to cancel classes during the 51st International Eucharistic Congress (IEC) this month.
New DepEd Cebu City Schools Division Superintendent Bianito Dagatan paid his courtesy call on Labella yesterday.
The acting mayor emphasized the need for them to work together, particularly that there are concerns that need to be addressed by both DepEd and the City Government.
In the coming days, Labella said he will sit down with Dagatan along with the Cebu City Transportation Office (CCTO) and traffic police to discuss how will they implement the suspension of classes during the IEC.
Labella said he wanted to ask for the recommendations of the traffic group and the education department because as much as possible, those schools where classes will not be disrupted by the religious activity should not suspend their classes.
This, considering that they also need to make up for the days that classes will be canceled.
“Definitely we will came up with a decision on the suspension of classes,” Labella assured.
As he assumed office, Dagatan already attended the Sinulog sa Kabataan Dakbayan last Sunday, which was among of the first few commitments he had as the new chief of DepEd Cebu City.