There will be no break for Metro Manila policemen during the holidays.
Metro police chief Oscar Albayalde on Saturday said policemen in Metro Manila were not allowed to take a leave during the Christmas season.
Albayalde declared a “no break policy” for the five police districts in Metro Manila to ensure a high level of police visibility.
District directors were ordered to deploy policemen in Catholic churches to protect the faithful from criminals and terrorists.
Albayalde also ordered police officers to strengthen their safety and security measures. He said the police will be on “full alert” during the holiday season.
Albayalde’s order is in line with President Rodrigo Duterte’s statement that he will not order the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) to stop operations against the New People’s Army (NPA), the armed unit of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) during the celebration of Christmas and New Year.
The head of the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) called on the public to report suspicious individuals to the police.
“We encourage the public to welcome the presence of our police in areas they frequent for prayers or shopping however, report any suspicious individuals or groups so that we can immediately extend police assistance,” Albayalde said in a statement.
He warned that police personnel who would be reported for misconduct by civilians will be held responsible by their supervisors.
“I reiterate also my previous instruction that all immediate supervisors will be held responsible for the deeds and misdeeds of their personnel,” Albayalde said.
According to Albayalde, police inspections in crime-prone areas will be conducted by his office and its “Red Teams” at any given time. He said they would also conduct “Oplan Sita,” an operation against motorcycle-riding criminals.
“Likewise, I also ordered the maximized deployment of our Special Reactions Units for Oplan Sita in critical or crime-prone areas,” the police official said.
He called on police personnel to celebrate the Christmas season where they are assigned since no holiday break would be given to them.
“We will celebrate with the community where we are assigned,” Albayalde said. With RJ CARBONELL