Police commanders in Metro Manila have been ordered to deploy more policemen in churches, parks and other areas where people usually flock amid concerns of health experts of upsurge of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) when the restriction alert in the National Capital Region was downgraded to Level 3.
Gen. Guillermo Lorenzo Eleazar, chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP), said the order was in response to the appeal of the Department of Health to continue implementing the minimum public health safety protocol after a number of people flock to churches, malls, parks and other areas over the weekend after the downgrading of the alert status in Metro Manila.
“On orders of our SILG (Secretary of the Interior and Local Government) Eduardo Año, I have already directed our unit commanders in the National Capital Region to increase police presence in all possible areas of destination of our kababayan following the downgrading of alert level in Metro Manila,” said Eleazar.
DOH officials and some health experts expressed concerns over what they describe was an apparent complacency on the part of the people when they go out of their homes to take advantage of the easing of restrictions in the metropolis.
In some parks and churches, it was observed that people failed to observe the protocols for their safety despite the repeated appeal of marshals.
“Kasama sa aking kautusan ang coordination sa ating mga LGUs sa Metro Manila upang maayos na maipatupad ang minimum public health safety protocols at ibang pang mga restriction na ipapatupad sa NCR (Part of my order to our unit commanders is to coordinate with the LGUs (local government units) in Metro Manila to implement the minimum public health safety and other restrictions in NCR,” said Eleazar.
“Natutuwa kami sa PNP na kahit paano ay bumabalik na sa normal ang sitwasyon sa ating bansa subalit hindi dapat maging dahilan ito para tayo ay maging kampante at balewalain ang health safety protocols dahil kung hindi, ang panandaliang kaligayahan na ating nararamdaman ngayon ay mauuwi na naman sa matagal na lockdown (We in the PNP are happy that the situation is starting to normalize but this should not be a reason to be complacent and ignore the health safety protocols because the happiness that we feel now may turn again into lockdown measures),” he added.