MANILA -- National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) director, Maj. Gen. Guillermo Eleazar, said cops will be on full alert status during the Holy Week in anticipation of the exodus of travelers.
Eleazar has ordered the five police districts in the metropolis to tighten security around airports, seaports, vital government and private installations as well as places of convergence to ensure peaceful observance of the Holy Week.
The five districts covered by the NCRPO are the Manila Police District (MPD), Quezon City Police District (QCPD), Northern Police District (NPD), Southern Police District (SPD), and Eastern Police District (EPD).
“On Holy Week, we are on full alert status, all applied leave of PNP personnel are cancelled to ensure (that) all PNP personnel are present. All posts, where policemen are on duty to make sure (there is a) 100 percent attendance,“ Eleazar told the Philippine News Agency (PNA).
Full alert means the highest level of readiness in all police offices and units in Metro Manila.
He said policemen will complement existing security measures such as checkpoints to deter criminals' activities.
A total of 11,600 policemen will be deployed to secure vital installations, bus terminals, jeepney stops, airports and seaports, churches and other pilgrimage sites, and even residential areas to ensure a peaceful and orderly Lenten season.
He said particular emphasis will be placed on securing bus terminals, seaports and airports, adding that aside from the deployment of uniformed personnel and K9 units, assistance desks will also be set up in these facilities.
Eleazar also said police will secure churches which will be visited by Catholic faithful for the Visita Iglesia tradition.
He said it has yet to detect security threats in Metro Manila for the Holy Week.
“So far, we have not received information on threats but we remain alert for the Holy Week, especially in places of convergence, like churches for those doing Visita Iglesia. We will deploy police assistance desk in churches here in Metro Manila as part of our preparations," Eleazar said.
Eleazar also appealed to the public to be alert and report to the police any suspicious person or behavior and any untoward incidents or crimes through the NCRPO hotline 0915-888-8181 or 0999-901-8181.
The NCRPO chief also reminded vacationers to make sure their vehicles are in good running condition to avoid accidents.
Holy Week starts on Palm Sunday, April 14, and will end on Easter Sunday, April 21.
Malacañang has declared April 18 (Maundy Thursday) and April 19 (Good Friday) as regular holidays and April 20 (Black Saturday) as a special non-working day.
During Holy Week, Christians remember all the events leading up to the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and to the celebration of his resurrection on Easter Sunday. (PNA)
Photo from Inquirer