Better police visibility needed - Palace

by RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 17 2014 04:02 PM | Updated as of Jun 18 2014 12:02 AM

MANILA - A Palace official gave assurances the government is firmly determined to stem the tide of criminality and improve the ability of law enforcement agencies to solve crimes.

Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said, “We note the directives issued at a Command Conference yesterday by the Chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP) to increase police visibility through intensified patrols and checkpoints, stricter enforcement of gun-control measures, neutralization of guns-for-hire and implementation of search warrants for loose firearms.”

He said increased police visibility may serve as a deterrent against crime, “as patrols and checkpoints may lessen opportunities for criminal elements, especially if there will also be heightened citizen vigilance and cooperation with the police.”

“We note, for instance, that the Quezon City Police Department has established mobile police desks in strategic points, operating on a 24-hour basis to monitor the peace and order situation and provide ready access for citizen assistance. In Pangasinan, the PNP created a task force to oversee anti-criminality operations and neutralize guns-for-hire.”

He also discussed the PNP’s stricter enforcement of gun control, pursuant to its duty as the chief implementing agency for Republic Act No. 10591 or the “Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulation Act,” passed in 2013.

“It will be recalled that prior to the May 2013 elections, the PNP conducted a nationwide door-to-door campaign to verify ownership of registered firearms, hence, the name ‘Oplan Katok.’ This was also aimed at neutralizing partisan armed groups or private armies. The successful conduct of this campaign resulted in a significantly lower incidence of election-related violence, especially in known hotspots,” he said.