Following the bombing incident in Marawi City on December 3, the Bacolod City Police Office (BCPO) is on heightened alert to address potential security threats in the locality.
Lieutenant Colonel Ronnie Brillo, administrative officer for the office of City Director of BCPO, said Thursday, December 7, that Colonel Noel Aliño had already ordered all station commanders to intensify their visibility patrols, especially in schools, churches, malls, terminals, and sea ports.
He said on Tuesday, December 5, they held a joint coordinating conference with the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office, Muslim leaders, and stakeholders at the BCPO headquarters and discussed the possible entry of terrorists in Bacolod City and Negros Occidental.
"It's a proactive measure to prevent similar incidents,” he added.
Brillo noted that they are preparing for the possible transfer of the suicide bombers here in the province.
On December 3, at least four persons died in an explosion during a Catholic Mass at Marawi State University (MSU) gymnasium, and at least 43 individuals were also injured.
ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) also claimed responsibility for a deadly explosion.
Brillo said the Muslim leaders in Bacolod City and Negros Occidental also condemned the incident, and they signified to help the authorities avoid similar incidents.
“Once they have a Muslim visitor from another area, it’s part of their tradition to accommodate them, but they assured us that they will accompany them until they go home to their hometown to ensure that they will not be involved in illegal activity here,” he said.
He added that they promised to monitor and supervise their Muslim brothers who were visiting the city.
Moreover, BCPO also deployed 30 police assistance desks in various areas, including the downtown area.
Brillo said the police should monitor public places, especially during the dawn masses, or “Simbang Gabi,” that will start on December 16.
He said policemen were tasked with coordinating with the parish priest so they could conduct ocular inspection and monitor the possible abandoned bags inside the church.
The police also asked for the cooperation of the public to report to the nearest police station any suspicious-looking persons within their barangay or business establishment to avoid any untoward incidents.*