Saturday, August 17, 2019

Implementing rules out for Davao's ‘maximum security zone’

From the Philippine News Agency (Aug 17, 2019): Implementing rules out for Davao's ‘maximum security zone’

The areas comprising the San Pedro Square in Davao City, which has been designated as a maximum security zone. (Grabbed from City Councilor Mabel Sunga-Acostas Facebook account)

DAVAO CITY--The city government has released the implementing rules guiding the security arrangements within the San Pedro Square maximum security zone (MSZ).

The implementing guidelines, signed by Acting Davao City Vice Mayor Sebastian "Baste" Duterte, on Thursday defined the roles of the Davao City Police Office (DCPO), Task Force Davao, the Public Safety and Security Command Center (PSSCC), and the City Environment and Natural Resources Office (CENRO) in ensuring the security within the MSZ.

According to Duterte's memorandum, the local police is tasked to maintain a 24/7 Police Assistance Desk along San Pedro Street; install additional 24/7 Police Assistance Desk along Bolton Street corner Pichon Street; maintain a Police Mobile Patrol Car along San Pedro Street and Pichon Street; and to coordinate with the other members of the security cluster and local officials.

PSSCC, meanwhile, will establish complete closed-circuit television monitoring within the MSZ; impose exemptions to “no backpack policy” and “no jacket policy” in consultation with the security cluster and event organizers during events; and to coordinate with the other members of the security cluster and local officials.

TF Davao, on the other hand, will conduct regular anti-terrorism forums for local government employees, as well as vendors at the parks and nearby areas, workers in restaurants, malls, churches and other business establishments located inside the square; and deploy bomb-sniffing dogs on Sundays and during huge public events.

The taskforce is also mandated to deploy a "red team" to assess vulnerabilities of the MSZ.

CENRO workers, for their part, are tasked with ensuring that only transparent garbage bins are allowed inside the MSZ. The must also see to it that the garbage bins are regularly checked and collected.

The guidelines defined MSZ as an area where access is "controlled through an entry point and limited to authorized, appropriately screened persons, and authorized and properly escorted persons, clients, visitors, and users of the public space where monitoring is done 24/7 by peacekeeping forces."

Acting Mayor Duterte has appealed to Dabawenyos and the city's visitors to serve as "eyes and ears" against "peace saboteurs", as the city is in the midst of its biggest cultural event--the 34th Kadayawan Festival this month.

“All Dabawenyos and guests who reside, work or have transactions within the San Pedro Square Maximum Security Zone are encouraged to serve as the “eyes and ears” of the peacekeeping authorities by reporting suspicious persons, unattended baggage and violations of ordinances relating to security,” Baste said.

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