By Aaron Recuenco
The Philippine National Police (PNP) will support any decision to implement a total lockdown in the country amid the increasing number of violators of home quarantine and social distancing.
PNP chief Gen. Archie Francisco Gamboa said that total lockdown would be inevitable if people still roam around despite the strict guidelines against this under the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ), that was implemented to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
“Some violators feel they can get away with the enforcement of quarantine rules and local ordinances,” Gamboa said.
Based on the latest data, more than 130,000 curfew violators have been arrested across the country since the implementation of the ECQ on March 17.
The Chief PNP said some local officials have given their nod to the imposition of tougher measures against ECQ violators.
President Duterte earlier floated the idea of implementing martial Law-like security measures after airing his frustration with the continuous violation of the home quarantine and social distancing.
Duterte asked the police and the military to be ready.
As part of the preparation, Gamboa tasked all police commanders to intensify the measures to deny people the opportunity to violate the home quarantine.
“I call on all regional directors to put action to the strong words of the President. I expect all of you to support this,” Gamboa said.
Gamboa also ordered a massive crackdown on illegal activities violating physical distancing and gathering of persons, such as illegal cockfights, card games, and other forms of gambling and and drinking sessions in public places.