VALENTINE’S Day is a time for heartfelt presents and romantic dinners.
On the other hand, Ash Wednesday, which ushers in Lent, is a day of fasting, self-denial, and confession.
For the first time since 2018, these two different holidays coincide on Wednesday, February 14, 2024.
Because of this, all city and provincial police office chiefs were directed to assign police personnel in places where lovers flock, such as motels, lodging houses and public plazas.
Police Lieutenant Colonel Gerard Ace Pelare, a spokesperson for PRO 7, stated that they have already coordinated with the management of lodging houses and motels to keep minors out of their establishments, otherwise they risk being charged for breaking Republic Act 7610 or the Child Abuse Law.
During the openline media conference, Pelare declared that the different police chiefs were also instructed to safeguard the churches where Catholic devotees visit to have crosses made of ashes placed on their foreheads.
In accordance with the events, the police were also told to set up checkpoints in their respective areas in Central Visayas.
"Our main efforts here is ang among close coordination sa tag-iya ug sa mga security guards, the moment that we detect nga naay mga possible minors nga mosulod we will immediately come to the picture, ang atung mga WCPD officers they are on standby today, tomorrow and the next day to make sure nga motaas ang porsiento nga maka detect ta sa mga mosulod nga menor de edad," Pelare said.
In order to prevent couples from becoming victims of holdups, the Cebu City Police Office's Mobile Patrol Group and the Highway Police Group (HPG 7) were also given orders to patrol public plazas, including those in the city's mountain barangays where couples congregate.
According to Lieutenant Colonel Wilbert Parilla, chief of the HPG 7, more people are anticipated to come to Busay and other destinations along the Trans Central Highway to relax and dine with their loved ones on Valentine's Day.
Additionally, the police reaffirmed its alert to the public, specifically advising women not to fall for online romance scams when their partners demand large amount of money. (AYB, TPT)