Police brace for SONA rallies

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THE Philippine National Police (PNP) will deploy its very first mobile advance command post when President Benigno Aquino 3rd delivers his last State Of the Nation Address (SONA) on Monday.

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PNP spokesman Chief Supt. Wilben Mayor said the mobile command post will allow ranking police officials to monitor the activities and events taking place in and around the Batasang Pambansa complex.

The officer-in-charge of the National Capital Regional Police Office (NCRPO), Chief Supt. Allen Bantolo, will man the command post.

Bantolo is the commander of the PNP Task Force SONA.

Senior Supt. Ramon Puruganan, the deputy chief of the PNP communication and electronic service, said the mobile command post will have four small TV sets and three large TV sets that will serve as monitors for the security cameras. It is also equipped with satellite phones and two-way radios.

The NCRPO has prepared an elaborate security measure to ensure that no untoward incident will occur when the President delivers his final SONA.

“We are reviewing our security plan last year and we might use it again this coming Monday. Of course with some improvements,” Bantolo said.

The police expects around 10,000 people to join protest actions on Monday.

An intelligence assessment report seen by The Manila Times said bulk of the protesters will come from Central Luzon.

The report said 3,000 people will be coming from the Southern Tagalog Region that comprises the provinces of Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon. They will be joined by at least 2,000 from Metro Manila.

Traffic rerouting
The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) will close some roads in Quezon City also on Monday, including the stretch of Commonwealth Avenue from Ever Gotesco to St. Peter’s Church (northbound).

A zipper lane will be opened at the southbound lane of Congressional Avenue from Jocfer Building to the Commission on Audit for northbound vehicles.

MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino advised motorists to take the following alternate routes to avoid inconvenience:

* Along North Avenue, take Mindanao Avenue, turn right to Quirino Highway to destination and vice versa.

* Along EDSA, turn right to Congressional Avenue, left to Mindanao Avenue, right to Old Sauyo Road, straight to Don Julio Gregorio and Republic Avenue, left to Chestnut, right to Dahlia Avenue, left to Fairlane or Regalado Avenue to destination and vice versa.

The MMDA will deploy 1,200 personnel to manage vehicular and pedestrian traffic and support the operations of the NCRPO and the Quezon City Police District.

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