The memorandum of the police maritime unit that several vehicles carrying explosives could be headed to Metro Manila may have been based on hearsay, the head of the Philippine National Police’s Maritime Group said on Wednesday.
Maritime Group director Loy Morales said information sharing within the unit is part of their enhanced security measures. The memorandum came from the maritime office in Dapitan City.
“His basis may have come from within his area, (he) collated it and shared it to the operation managers of shipping lines operating also within his area,” Morales told reporters.
The information has yet to be verified.
The memorandum dated June 1 alleged that seven vehicles carrying improvised explosive devices (IED) are possibly on their way to Metro Manila from Mindanao. The memo listed the plate numbers of the vehicles.
PNP Spokesman Dionardo Carlos had said that the maritime group will dig deeper into the leaked memorandum.
“The verification is ongoing.We could have many interpretations with this because [the bombs]might be used while the car is boarded in a ship, but it could be not. The vehicles could also be just the bombs’ transport so there could be many angles in this case and it is all subject for verification.” Morales said.
He added that they will seek the assistance of the Land Transportation Office (LTO).
“If [this memorandum]is true, it is just right to issue a warning coming from respective units but in this case, it is not verified yet so it is still under verification,” Morales said.
In light with the investigation, the Maritime Group has tightened security measures on port terminals and have established close coordination with port authorities and other maritime enforcement agencies.
“The shipping lines have their own security measures. They will closely coordinate with appropriate agencies in securing the ports and all trips are secured by our unit,” Morales said.