PNP on red alert after cathedral blasts

January 28, 2019
Oscar D. Albayalde

PHILIPPINE National Police chief Director General Oscar D. Albayalde on Sunday midnight placed the entire 190,000-strong police force under heightened alert in the aftermath of the Jolo Cathedral bombing that killed 20 people and wounded 112 others.

The PNP chief flew to Jolo early yesterday morning to oversee the ongoing post-blast investigation and to personally extend the sympathies of the national leadership to the orphaned families and at the same time attend to the needs of the wounded survivors now undergoing treatment for blast injuries at the Integrated Provincial Health Office-Sulu Provincial Hospital, Sulu Sanitarium and KHTB Station Hospital in Jolo.

PNP Director for Operations Director Ma-o R. Aplasca instructed all 17 police regional directors to ensure that the attack will not be repeated.

“Based on our best practices in PRO 11 and PRO 12, mobilizing the community to help secure the communities is very effective coupled with a better harmonized and well-coordinated efforts of the PNP, Armed Forces and local government units,” Aplasca said.

The heightened alert condition also called for intensified checkpoint operations and strict implementation of the election gun ban. However, PNP regional directors were given discretionary authority to raise alert conditions in their areas of responsibility depending on the prevailing peace and order situation, said PNP spokesman Senior Superintendent Bernard M. Banac.