A TOTAL of 1,144 beggars roaming the streets of Metro Manila since last December 11 have been rescued, majority of them turned over to government authorities by the police, National Capital Region Police Office chief, Director Guillermo Lorenzo T. Eleazar reported yesterday.
The official said that since they started enforcing Presidential Decree No. 1563 or the Mendicancy Law of 1978 from December 11 up to yesterday morning, they have conducted 185 operations which led in the rescue of 455 adult beggars or 39.77 percent of the total figures and 689 minors or 60.23 percent of the number.
Eleazar said that 202 or 17.66 percent of those rescued were Aeta tribesmen composed of 99 adult males and females and 93 minors which include 59 males and 44 females.
On the other hand, 257 Badjao tribesmen broken down into 42 adult males and 69 adult females as well as 53 male minors and 93 female minors were also among those rescued.
The other beggars accosted include 685 informal settlers including 147 adult males; 98 adult females; 303 boys and 137 girls.
Eleazar said that of the total, 34 were accosted by the Northern Police District; 74 by the Eastern Police District; 384 by the Manila Police District; 300 by the Southern Police District; and 352 by the Quezon City Police District.
Eleazar said that majority of those rescued were either turned over to the Department of Social Welfare and Development, local barangay authorities, Manila’s Boys Town and the Jose Fabella Center in Mandaluyong City.
Others were released after being given warnings.
Eleazar ordered the rescue of the mendicants amid concerns that many of them particularly the minors are exposed to dangers on the streets and the elements and in particular can be hit anytime by passing motor vehicles.