By Betheena Kae Unite
The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) was ordered yesterday to take over the control and supervision of security operations in all seaports nationwide amid security threat posed by the Maute insurgents.
The order came from the Department of Transportation.
By virtue of Department Order (D.O.) No. 2017-008 issued on June 5, 2017, Transport Chief Arthur Tugade directed the PCG, “… to take over the security supervision of ports, and shipping, whether public or private, including the egress and ingress to all waterways from the Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) and the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA).”
Under the order, PCG was instructed to control movement of all vessels in seaports and harbours; designate security zones for maritime security purposes; enforce ports and ships identification system; regulate access to ports, vessels and waterfront facilities.
The Coast will be strictly inspecting cargoes to prevent the transport of contrabands and will set and enforce appropriate security levels in all ports in Mindanao, pursuant to the provisions of the International Ships and Ports Security (ISPS) Code.
According to the order, the PCG will be allowed to arrest, seize and detain persons, cargo and vessels found violating maritime security and other pertinent laws and to file the necessary charges.
The Coast Guard will also strictly enforce maritime security communications; supervise, regulate and control port police and private security guards, K9 entities, divers and underwater operations in all maritime-related facilities and infrastructure.
Tugade said the order will took effect immediately after its issuance and will remain in full force and effect until Martial Law in Mindanao is lifted.