The Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office is calling on Negrenses to be vigilant, even during the celebration of the Lenten season, as the New People’s Army marks its 49th founding anniversary also on March 29, which is Holy Thursday.
Senior Supt. Rodolfo Castil, provincial police director of Negros Occidental, said yesterday that they will intensify their police visibility operations by establishing assistance hubs and deployment of personnel in bus terminals, ports, malls, churches and other areas of convergence.
The Lenten season this year starts on March 25, which is Palm Sunday, and will end April 1, Easter Sunday.
The Army’s 303rd Infantry Brigade is also on alert status, in line with the NPA founding anniversary, its spokesman, Capt. Eduardo Precioso, said.
Castil said they will also have police mobile patrols along subdivisions, villages and roads in their area of responsibility, on top of coordinating with the AFP in the conduct of intelligence operations against the CPP-NPA.
Lawless elements are just waiting for an opportunity to strike, he said, and he vowed not to tolerate violence during the holy season.
Castil also appealed to Negrenses to cooperate and report any crimes or lawlessness that happens in their areas.
At the same time, he also echoed the appeal of the AFP for members of the NPA to surrender, as the PNP will help facilitate their enrolment in the Comprehensive Local Integration Program.
While the ordinary NPA members are bleeding and sacrificing in the field, their leaders are enjoying a luxurious life in the Netherlands, Castil said.
“It is not yet too late to have a normal life, do it for children and your grand-children,” he added.* GPB
The Philippine Coast Guard-Negros Occidental is also on heightened alert in anticipation of the influx of passengers during Holy Week, its head, Lt. Commander Jimmy Oliver Vingno, said yesterday.
A big number of passengers are expected to arrive at the ports of Bacolod starting Thursday, Vingno said.
"In last year's Holy Week, more passengers arrived than those who departed before the long holiday," Vingno said.
Vingno said that in this year's Holy Week on March 26 to April 1, the PCG will double their personnel with the augmentation from the PCG auxiliary, and will be strictly implementing the "no excess passengers" policy.
Personnel of PCG-Negros Occidental will also conduct mobile and seaborne patrol especially in areas were many beach-goers are swimming and will install police assistance desks, Vingno said.
The PCG-Negros Occidental and its 13 substations are now well-equipped with their new all-purpose jack truck and serviceable speed boats, he said.
He added that in Bacolod alone, they have more than 50 personnel.
Passengers, meanwhile, are advised to follow safety precautions when travelling on sea vessels and passing through sea ports.*SGG
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