The Philippine National Police (PNP) has instructed all its unit commanders especially in MIndanao to step up the security measures following the twin bombings in Central Mindanao that left at least one person injured.
Police Maj. Gen. Valeriano de Leon, director of the PNP Directorate for Operations, said he issued a memorandum directing police regional directors to ensure that no attacks similar to the bus bombings in Tacurong City and Koronadal City would be carried out.
In the memorandum issued on Friday, May 27, De Leon said all police commanders down to the level of chiefs of police in the municipalities were instructed to conduct inspections in all transport terminals and target-hardening of vital installations, public places, and other places of convergence.
“Our commanders were also instructed to conduct checkpoints in major thoroughfares and strategic roads, and to beef up intelligence-gathering,” said De Leon.
On Thursday, May 26, two explosions ripped through passengers buses in the two cities in Central Mindanao.
The bus bombings in Koronadal City and Tacurong City were the most recent in a series of attacks over the years, and initial investigations based on the past incidents revealed that the motive of these local armed groups was extortion.
De Leon said the PNP Officer-In-Charge Police Lt. Gen. Vicente Danao Jr. has already ordered a thorough investigation into the attacks.
“These people must be brought to justice; otherwise, they will be emboldened to undertake similar attacks in the future,” said De Leon.
He said the National Headquarters is ready to deploy additional troops, if necessary, to run after the groups involved.
De Leon said that while the investigation and pursuit operations are underway, Regional Directors and Unit Commanders in neighboring areas should come up with the necessary security adjustments to protect civilians in coordination with other stakeholders that include the transport operators.
“I condemn in the strongest terms these senseless attacks that victimized civilians. But this condemnation should come with the necessary security adjustments and new strategies to protect civilians, especially from similar attacks, “said De Leon.