Military to monitor Cebu City streets again

By Fe Marie Dumaboc February 17,2017

Cebuanos will again be seeing military men patrol Cebu City streets starting next month.

President Rodrigo Duterte has already given his approval to an earlier request by the Cebu City Council to tap the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) – Central Command in securing city streets, said councilor Dave Tumulak.

Military men will be working in coordination with the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) especially in the fight against illegal gambling and insurgency, said CCPO director Joel Doria.

City Council members passed a resolution on August 2, 2016 to request the AFP-Visayas Command to augment the PNP “in the drive against lawlessness and criminality by making their presence (felt) in public places like markets, land and sea ports, terminals, wharfs, ferries, public parks and beaches, public squares, bars and malls, including the (80) barangays.”

The approved resolution said that the city government will provide guidelines on how to go about the AFP augmentation to make sure that “no rights of individual and the public is violated in the pursuit of this noble objective.”

Col. Noel Baluyan, head of the Task Force Cebu, visited Tumulak’s office on Wednesday to show him a copy of the president’s letter granting authority to the AFP to deploy personnel in the city and to participate in a joint patrol with the Philippine National Police (PNP).

Doria said that he is now in discussion with Baluyan and Tumulak on how to go about the joint patrol’s implementation.

Doria said they are also in the process of identifying critical areas where AFP help will be needed the most. “We wanted to make sure that these will be places where there are lot of people,” he said.

Doria said some AFP personnel will also be assigned to help in the anti-insurgency campaign in the city’s mountain barangays.

Military men were first seen patrolling city streets on September 2016. But they were later on recalled because of the need to first secure the president’s approval on their deployment in the city.

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