By Joseph Jubelag
COTABATO CITY – Local residents are expecting a better peace and order situation in this city with the tandem of a lady city mayor and a lady police chief.
City Mayor Cynthia Guiani-Sayadi has picked P/Colonel Portia Manalad as city police director, replacing P/Col. Michael Lebanan who was declared persona-non-grata by the City Council for alleged inefficiency in the implementation of law and order in the city in his four-month stint as police chief.
Manalad assumed her post on Monday as Sayadi urged the new city police chief to strictly implement the ordinances of the city, including the curfew for minors, no smoking and no liquor drinking in public places, and the ban on the use of open pipe mufflers for motorcycles.
P/Brig. Gen Eliseo Rasco, Police Regional Office-12 director, recommended Manalad, a graduate of Philippine National Police Academy (PNPA) Class ’95, to Sayadi.
Aniceto Rasalan, executive secretary of the city mayor’s office, expressed optimism that Manalad can steer the city police force with the full support from the city government.
He said city officials urged the city police director to sustain the conduct of police visibility and patrol in coordination with village officials as a deterrent to curb criminality, terrorism and illegal drugs around the city.
The strong collaboration between the city government and the city police force in the implementation of peace and security measures has earned recognition for Cotabato City as one of the safest cities in the country for the past two years.