IN what has been recorded as the first in the entire Philippine National Police’s 28-year history, top officials of the Police Regional Office 7 in Central Visayas motored to Sta. Catalina, Negros Oriental last week to lead a medical and dental outreach program in the known New People’s Army-infested locality which benefited nearly 2,000 local residents.
The PRO7 Command Group, all members of its directorial staff and other officials of different Central Visayas administrative and support units as well as the local territorial police, military and other law enforcement authorities ventured for the first time into the area known for having a considerable presence of NPA guerrillas.
Apart from Team PRO7, officers and men from the PNP Health Service, Special Action Force, Intelligence Group, Explosives and Ordnance Disposal Division, Army’s 302nd Brigade, 94th Infantry Battalion, Navy, Coast Guard, Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency and other government agencies converged in Barangay Talalak where two of 14 suspected NPA personalities were killed in a massive police operation last March 30.
The conduct of the medical and dental outreach program in Barangay Talalak in Sta. Catalina municipality and a series of dialogues with local residents were initiated by PRO7 director, Brigadier General Debold M. Sinas, the Journal Group learned.
The program saw 105 local residents being circumcised under the PRO7’s Oplan: Tuli; 110 persons receiving dental treatment, 375 others getting free medical consultation and one undergoing a minor surgery. Sinas and his men likewise distributed free medicines, blankets, slippers, toys and stuffed toys, basketballs and volleyballs and school supplies to the villagers.