THE Cebu Police Provincial Office (CPPO) will deploy 600 more police personnel to Cebu City to serve as an augmentation force for the upcoming Sinulog activities.
Police Lieutenant Colonel Mark Gifter Sucalit, deputy provincial director for operation of the CPPO, said the police personnel from the different police stations in the province will be asked to report to the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) starting Monday, January 2, 2023.
Sucalit said the CPPO plays a great role in securing order and safety during the Sinulog festivity.
One of the events that will be guarded by the additional police force is the Walk with Jesus on January 5, opening salvo of the Sinulog festival from Fuente Osmeña oval to the Basilica Minore del Santo Niño.
“Out sa 2,000 plus nato nga tropa, ang 600 ana atong ihatag sa Cebu City Police Office and as a matter of fact, ugma maghatag tag 600 ka tropa para sa send-off ceremony. Daku nga challenge ang pag-secure sa Sinulog. So it takes resources meaning personnel para madeploy,” Sucalit said.
Meanwhile, the CPPO has ordered every police station in the municipalities and component cities to be on alert during the entire Sinulog celebration in honor of the Child Jesus.
Sucalit said many foreign and local tourists are expected to come to Cebu City to witness the Sinulog and visit the different tourist destinations in the province, thus the need to also provide them with police security.
The CPPO has identified 15 tourist destinations in the province where it would deploy tourist police units.
But Sucalit said police operations in the province would not be affected by the temporary reassignment of policemen to the city because they have the members of the Barangay Peacekeeping Action Team (BPAT) of every municipality as their backup.
In Cebu City, CCPO Chief Colonel Ireneo Dalogdog also announced their readiness to provide security for Sinulog activities with the help of thousands of force multipliers from the different departments of City Hall.
The Inter-Agency Coordinating meeting headed by Police Brigadier General Jerry Bearis, new director of the Police Regional Office in Central Visayas (PRO 7), was held Monday, January 2, to discuss their security preparations from day 1 until the end of Sinulog.
“Mag-start gyud ang pinaka-activity sa January 5, 2023 alas 3 sa kaadlawon, pero as per advice by our regional director Police Brigadier General Jerry Bearis na a day before, kailangan mayron tayong skeletal deployment para masiguro nato na mabantayan gyud nato tong area kung asa nato i-deploy ang atong tropa,” Dalogdog said.
(The activity will start on January 5 at 3 a.m., but as per advice by our regional director Police Brigadier General Jerry Bearis that a day before, there will be skeleton deployment to ensure that areas where our troops will be deployed will be secured.)
Policemen on duty will be provided with meal packs by the Cebu City Government.
Amid a series of coordinating conferences together with the Task Force Sinulog, the police did not receive any information from the intelligence community about a threat during the Sinulog week.
The police stressed, though, that this does not mean that they have to be complacent. Rather, they must strengthen their security in anticipation of the large number of Santo Niño devotees who will take part in the celebration. (AYB, TPT)