THE Philippine National Police yesterday advised the public to take all necessary precautions that will keep them and their homes safe during the coming Holy Week and the rest of the summer vacation.
PNP spokesman, Colonel Bernard M. Banac said that on orders of PNP chief, Director General Oscar D. Albayalde, they have launched their Oplan Ligtas Sumvac (Summer Vacation) 2019 which is aimed at ensuring the safety and protection of the public during the vacation period.
He and Police-Community Relations Group deputy director, Colonel Romeo Sedanto also underscored the need for the public to follow travel safety tips, first and foremost of which is the BLOWBAGETS which stand for batteries, lights, oil, water, brakes, air, engine, tire and self.
Banac said as the summer vacation starts, police will also be on watch against the possible use of illegal drugs in beaches and other tourist destinations.
“Sa mga tutungo sa mga tourist destinations, na alam natin na dadagsain ng ating mga kababayan at mga dayuhan, ang paalala natin sa lahat: Iwasan po natin ang party drugs,” the PNP spokesperson told newsmen at Camp Crame.
Banac said all 17 police regional offices have been ordered to step-up their anti-criminality operations and patrols along major travel routes, places of convergence, and tourist destinations as the country prepares to observe the Holy Week, fiestas and other major events this summer.
He said undercover officers would be monitoring the possible selling of party drugs, shabu and marijuana in major beach resorts in the country.
“Sa mga beach resorts, parties na gaganapin, na mayroong magtatangka na magpasok ng party drugs, huwag nang ituloy,” Banac said, citing past drug-related arrests in some popular tourist spots including Boracay, Mactan in Cebu, Bohol and Palawan.
Banac said a total of 77, 536 police personnel have been deployed across the country in line with the Ligtas SUMVAC security plan.
The official said all police security measures are in place to keep the streets safe 24/7 but still, they need the help of the general public in thwarting the presence of organized crime groups expected to increase their activities.
Gen. Albayalde has asked the public to follow very important tips that could save lives, limbs and properties from criminals or even accidents while traveling in a private vehicle or a public vehicle.
The PNP chief said that with the influx of and movement of people from the rural areas to urban centers this Lenten Season, they are implementing a massive security, traffic and public safety plan.
These include the intensified conduct of foot and mobile patrols in areas and during times where their presence are most needed; establishment of Police Assistance Desks in places of convergence like shopping malls; deployment of road Safety Marshals; conduct of more checkpoint operations; and conduct of joint PNP-Armed Forces interdiction patrols to deter illegal discharge of firearms.
He, however, said important travel safety tips should also be remembered by the public to protect them in their workplaces and vehicles and ensure their safety while traveling on their way home.
National Capital Region Police Office chief, Major General Guillermo Lorenzo T. Eleazar also warned the public against members of criminal groups known for preying on targets in Metro Manila and other parts of the country during the summer vacation.
Among these groups are the notorious Salisi Gang, Ipit Taxi Gang, Siksik Gang, Riles Gang, Budol Budol, Sneaky Office Intruders, Condo Criminals and Solicit Gang, he said.
The NCRPO chief has reminded the public to be AVA or Be Alert, Vigilant and Accountable to enjoy a safe and peaceful Lent and summer vacation.
The top Metro Manila police official said the citizenry in particular should be constantly alert and vigilant against would-be criminals who will take advantage of the Holy Week when many Filipinos leave their homes for the provinces.
Eleazar reminded the public to immediately report to the patrolling police or to the nearest police station any suspicious person or items.
The NCRPO can also be contacted through the following hotlines and contacts:
NCRPO 838-3203, text hotlines: 0917-708-1135 or 0917-856-1040, Northern Police District 285-2396/285-2838, text hotline: 0917-847-5757, 0905-454-2547, 0916-558-2419, Eastern Police District 641-0171/641-0877, text hotlines: 0915-888-8181/0999-901-8181/ 0917-728-3790, Manila Police District 523-1367/523-3378 text hotlines: 0919-995-0976/0917-899-2092, Southern Police District 519-5525/519-8644 text hotline: 0908-377-0025, and Quezon City Police District at 925-8417/ 0917-840-3925.
Information can also be relayed thru text hotline 0995-645-1999/ 0919-496-7833 or through social media: Twitter@ncrporeact or Facebook page @ NCRPOReact.