By: Glazyl Y. Masculino
BACOLOD City The Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office (Nocppo) has deployed 3,251 election security officers on Monday.
The send-off ceremony was led by Police Brigadier General Jesus Cambay Jr., deputy regional director for administration of Police Regional Office (PRO)-6; and Police Colonel Romeo Baleros, Nocppo director, at the Nocppo headquarters here.
The contingent included 1,477 officers from Nocppo while the augmentation forces came from the Bacolod City Police Office or BCPO (166), Regional Personnel Holding and Accounting Unit or RPHAU (212), Negros Occidental Provincial Mobile Force Company or Nocpmfc (396), and Armed Forces of the Philippines (1,000).
The provincial headquarters also provided 57 vehicles, 41 motorcycles, 2,874 long and short firearms, and 328 radio communication handsets.
In his speech, Cambay said the regional office is confident that the local police is prepared for the elections.
The region provided Negros with enough personnel to secure the electoral process, he added.
Cambay said the security forces should achieve the following objectives: zero harassment or raid of municipal police stations by state enemies, no ambush, no liquidation, no major incidents, and no election-related violence starting yesterday until the election period is finished.
While we perform our duties we should be aware of the police operational procedures and election guidelines, Cambay said.
Cambay, who also delivered the message of Brigadier General John Bulalacao, PRO-6 regional director, said the police and the military must be at the forefront to secure the safety of the people during the election.
Matagal na tayong naghanda, nailatag na natin ang strategies (We have prepared for this, and we already have strategies) to avoid problems like the launching of a campaign against loose firearms, strengthening of support with the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), and intensifying of monitoring against criminal groups.
Despite the risk factors, Bulalacao said the police forces are ready to serve and protect the people.
We are raising the bar of the security with the deployment of about 90 percent of the police personnel, he said.
Bulalacao reminded the security forces to be fit both in body and mind, focus on their goals and to never fail to pray.
Baleros said the province is aiming for peaceful and successful elections.
With the support of other counterparts we can perform our duty well. We can maintain peace and security by enforcing the law without fear and favor. We are ready to face the challenges, with the guidance of the Almighty, he said.
Meanwhile, Brigadier General Benedict Arevalo, commander of 303rd Infantry Brigade of Philippine Army, said the military expressed its support with the police to ensure an orderly, honest, and peaceful elections.
We will assure you that all our combat and security operations will be followed, he added.
He also reminded them to remain apolitical and neutral.