By Christopher Lloyd Caliwan
PEACEFUL CELEBRATION. The SM City Urdaneta Central Christmas Market in Pangasinan. Philippine National Police chief Gen. Dionardo Carlos on Sunday lauded the policemen for the generally peaceful celebration of Christmas in the country. (File photo from What’s Up Dagupan Facebook Page)
MANILA – Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Dionardo Carlos on Sunday lauded the lawmen for the generally peaceful celebration of Christmas in the country.
“I thank our hardworking men and women in the PNP for their dedication to work and the sacrifices that they have to endure just to provide the public with quality service that they deserve,” he said in a statement.
Carlos said that it might have been a huge task but the PNP successfully discharged its duty to maintain peace and order especially during Christmas Eve.
He said this year, the PNP learned to embrace the challenges in securing the different places of convergence and other vital installations around the country, as he noted that protocols imposed to curb the spread of coronavirus disease have eased up compared to the previous year.
More local government units (LGUs) lifted the liquor ban, shortened curfew hours and deactivated quarantine checkpoints when the quarantine classification was downgraded to Alert Level 2 nationwide.
“We also thank the initiatives of various local government units that were badly hit by Typhoon Odette for implementing a total ban on firecrackers because the situation in their areas is dire without electricity and lack of water supply,” Carlos said.
More importantly, the public has been made aware of their responsibilities and the risks of overwhelmingly celebrating the holiday.
“Christmas can still be marked with joy if you are with your loved ones. It is merrier when you are safely savoring the moment with them,” Carlos added.
For his part, National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) chief Maj. Gen. Vicente Danao Jr., also said Christmas in Metro Manila was observed as generally peaceful through the “Ligtas Paskuhan 2021” program.
He said there was no major untoward incident that could disrupt the people’s celebration of Christmas, including the nine-day Simbang Gabi or pre-dawn masses, except for one indiscriminate firing of gun and two selling of firecrackers reports.
Danao said a total of 2,818 PNP personnel and 11,322 force multipliers were deployed to maintain peace and order in Metro Manila.
Likewise, he said additional police officers will be deployed on New Year’s Eve to secure the community fireworks display zones as the NCRPO remain on full alert status.
“I would like to remind the public to always stay vigilant in the midst of all the celebrations that we have right now because we are still in the middle of the pandemic. We should still observe minimum health standards to contain the spread of Covid-19,” Danao said in a separate statement. (PNA)