Metro Manila cops on full alert after Jolo blast
MANILA, Philippines — National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) chief Director Guillermo Eleazar has declared a full alert status to ensure safety in the metropolis after the deadly blasts in a Catholic church in Jolo, Sulu.
Eleazar told INQUIRER.net Monday that he raised the alert status of the Metro Manila police after the twin bombings during the celebration of Sunday Mass left at least 20 people dead and 112 others injured on Sunday, Jan. 27.
Under the full alert status, the police will intensify its checkpoints and patrolling operations in areas of convergence including commercial places, schools, and churches to impede possible threats. All leaves of police officers will also be cancelled.
Mobile units and patrol cars will also be deployed around the clock to “discourage, prevent and deter any evil plots from unfolding,” Eleazar said in a statement.
He also advised the public to be vigilant against suspicious activities.
“I call on our residents not to be alarmed nor to panic. Instead, I call on all residents to be defiant and vigilant,” said Eleazar.
“I encourage the public to be highly alert. Report any suspicious person or behavior, report any unfamiliar face in the neighborhood to the barangay or nearest policeman you can communicate with personally or through our hotlines,” he also said.
Meanwhile, PNP chief Director General Oscar Albayalde flew to Jolo to personally witness the investigation on the bombings and to rally the forces in the area.
The military said an initial investigation pointed to the Abu Sayyaf Group, a band of Islamic extremists notorious for kidnapping and bombings in the South, as the perpetrators of the attack. /je
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