‘ERAP’ wants link to company CCTVs
MANILA, Philippines—The Manila government will soon expand its network of security cameras with the approval of an ordinance requiring business establishments to provide it access to their closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras.
Under the ordinance approved by the city council last week which takes effect immediately, business establishments such as malls, convenience stores, banks, pawnshops and gasoline stations, among others, must hook up their closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras to the city government’s surveillance network before their permits can be renewed or issued.
The authors of the ordinance—Councilors Joel Chua Manuel Zarcal and Marlon Lacson—hope that the inclusion of businesses’ individual surveillance systems in the city government’s Emergency Response Assistance Program (ERAP) will speed up response to incidents and disasters.
The program was launched last year along with the opening of a P170-million Manila Command Center.
The ordinance covers businesses required under Ordinance 8173, series of 2008, to maintain surveillance systems, including malls, financial institutions and supermarkets, and other businesses with a minimum capital of P500,000.
As a rationale, it cites section 16 of the Local Government Code which mandates local governments to maintain peace and order.
The Business Permits and Licensing Office will be in charge of drafting implementing guidelines for its efficient implementation.
“Threats from lawless and criminal elements and the danger posed by natural and man-made calamities will always be the challenge that confronts local government officials from its day-to-day activities,” the councilors said.
Although the city government now has around 250 security cameras installed around Manila as part of ERAP, the authors of the ordinance acknowledged that this might not be enough to deter or prevent crime, or quickly respond to it.
“With the magnitude of people residing, working or just passing through the city, it would be impossible for the city government to make a swift and rapid response [to] every situation to safeguard the welfare of its constituents,” they said.
“To address this pressing issue, the City of Manila must look for a viable solution by adopting the advancement of modern technology for [an] effective, efficient and fast response [to] every emergency situation inside the metropolis. This program can only be achieved with the support of the business sector in the community which plays a vital role in the continued economic growth and development of the city,” they added.
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