LEGAZPI CITY, 21Sept2013 (PNA) – The Bicol police are on heightened alert status for the Penafrancia Festival, according to province police official.
Inspector Malou Calobaquib, Bicol police spokesman, on Friday told the Philippines News Agency that this means all officials and members of the Police Regional Office 5 are on call.
Calobaquib said a total of 434 police officers have been sent to Naga City for the religious event since September 9 and will go back to their respective mother units only after the festival.
She said an augmentation team from Camp General Simeon Ola is composed of 322 Philippine National Police Scout members–mostly PO1, 43 from inspection field training team and 69 from Regional Public Safety Battalion.
The police official said these officers are deployed in various parts of Naga City to ensure the safety and security of millions of devotees of the Our Lady of Penafrancia, the Patroness of Bicol, as well as local and foreign tourists.
Families also lend support to the activities taking place in the city in connection with the festival like civic and military parade, fluvial procession and many others.
Other agencies are helping as force multipliers to ensure security during the festival, Calubaquid said.
She said that after the festival, the Bicol police force will focus on the barangay elections scheduled on Oct. 28.
Based on the Commission on Elections, the election period will start on Sept. 28 to Nov. 12.
Calubaquid said checkpoints will almost triple in number or more during this election. (PNA)