No untoward incident in NCR so far - Espina
MANILA, Philippines -- Police offices throughout the country have been directed to stay on full security alert even after All Souls' Day, the Philippine National Police (PNP) said.
In an interview with radio dzMM, National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) Chief Leonardo Espina said all units of PNP are still on heightened alert as thousands are still expected to flock to the cemeteries.
"Palagpasin muna ho natin itong Undas and then we will assess. Dun po natin ibababa 'yung alert level," he said.
Aside from the observance of All Souls’ Day, Espina said the PNP is also preparing for the coming weekend when people are expected to leave the provinces.
"Tuloy-tuloy lang ho tayo ng trabaho. Hindi pa natatapos ang Undas. Kahapon lang 'yung kasagsagan, pero hindi pa ho tapos. Ito ho ay will go through weekend. Sunday naman ho kasagsagan naman ng pagpasok ng mga tao sa Metro Manila so lahat po ng assistance gagawin natin. Full alert ho kami, hindi pa ho bumababa 'yan," Espina added.
The NCRPO chief assured that no untoward incident has been recorded in cemeteries all over the country.
"Very peaceful at orderly at secured ho ang mga tao at wala ho tayong natanggap na any untoward incident... Walang imminent threat po tayong natanggap," Espina said.
Fewer visitors on All Souls' Day
As of 9 a.m., police said visitors at the Manila North Cemetery have reached an estimated 10,000.
Fewer people are entering the cemetery's gates compared to the influx of people on All Saints' Day on Thursday, which was estimated at 200 persons per minute.
Fewer visitors are also expected to troop to the Manila South Cemetery in Makati and Manila Memorial Park.
The Manila South Cemetery reported around 50,000 visitors stayed overnight.
Lambert Pena, general manager of Manila Memorial Park, said visitors on Thursday reached an estimated 450,000.
Less garbage than last year's Undas
Thousands of personnel were deployed by the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) to different cemeteries to help with the cleaning operations as millions of people who visited their departed loved ones left piles of garbage in the cemeteries.
However, MMDA noted that this year's garbage is fewer than the accumulated garbage last year.
So far, the MMDA has collected only two truckloads of garbage from the Manila North Cemetery.
The Ecowaste Coalition, meanwhile, reminded the public to do their share in keeping cemeteries clean by not leaving their trash inside.
Police will continue to be deployed in the Manila North and South cemeteries until Sunday. They will go back to normal operations on Monday. -- with reports from Francis Faulve and Bettina Magsaysay, ABS-CBN News; Noel Alamar and Dexter Ganibe, dzMM