By Aaron Recuenco
The Philippine National Police (PNP) reminded on Monday managers and owners of security agencies to seek the permission of the police before they allow their security guards to wear Santa Claus and other costumes in malls and other business establishments for the Yuletide season.
PNP chief Director General Oscar Albayalde said the proper wearing of prescribed uniform is something that the PNP has direct control of over security agencies and security guards across the country.
“Just like the PNP, we have a policy of wearing proper uniform. We cannot just wear Santa Claus costume,” said Albayalde.
Earlier, some security guards of a popular mall in Makati City were sanctioned with a hefty fine for wearing Santa Claus costumes. They were caught during the inspection of the PNP through the Supervisory Office for Security and Investigation Agencies (SOSIA).
SOSIA gives permit to security and investigation agencies to operate and security guards to work.
But Albayalde clarified that it is not the wearing of the Santa Claus uniforms itself that the security guards were sanctioned but the failure of the security agencies to seek permission from the SOSIA.
“They have to ask permission first, it is either the security agency or the establishment owners or managers who could ask permission,” said Albayalde.
He emphasized that even policemen themselves are prohibited from wearing even a Santa Claus hat while conducting patrol or assigned in business districts and other public places without the permission from Camp Crame.
The same rule, according to Albayalde, applies to security guards and security and investigation agencies. But he said that such rule is not absolute.
“If the mall management for instance would request that their security guards wear Santa Claus and other costumes because they want the environment to be more friendly, we can allow it,” said Albayalde.