CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines – The police regional office here has deployed more than 500 officers in the region’s major urban centers to thwart any terror attacks as it urged civilians to be more vigilant in light of the recent bombing in Isulan, Sultan Kudarat.
Supt. Surki Sereñas, Phil. National Police-10 (PNP-10) spokesperson, said the hundreds of law enforcers that were deployed in the cities of Cagayan de Oro and Iligan came from the Regional Mobile Force Battalion (RMFB) based in Barangay Gusa here.
“They were deployed to enhance police visibility,” Sereñas said Wednesday.
He added that the RMFB personnel, many of them wearing green vests, are usually stationed in city streets, sidewalks, and other areas in the cities.
He said the augmentation forces will stay deployed in the cities as needed or until the terror threat is gone.
Chief Supt. Timoteo Pacleb, the PNP-10 regional director, said: “This will ensure that practically every busy corners, commercial hubs, and other places of convergence will be manned by uniformed police or covert security personnel to prevent untoward incident from happening.”
Pacleb said he has also ordered the conduct of thorough inspections in all mobile checkpoints and the deployment of more law enforcers and special units such as the Explosive and Ordnance Disposal in bus terminals, airports and seaports.
Despite the security measures the police put in place, Pacleb acknowledged the indispensability of public support in keeping peace and public order in Northern Mindanao.
“The public remains our primordial and most effective weapon against terrorism. The public just need to be vigilant by doing our share to stop terrorism,” the regional police chief said, adding “say something when you see something.”
“We have won against crime and will continue winning so long as the public continue to support and rally behind us,” Sereñas
Sereñas said the threat in the region is still the Islamic State-inspired Maute Group although they are also on the lookout for other non-state armed groups like the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF).
“They (BIFF) can stage an attack anywhere, that’s why they are on our watchlist,” he added. (davaotoday.com)