Police stations across the province continue to be on alert against attacks from New People’s Army (NPA) rebels, even if the province is still considered by authorities as insurgency-free.
BPPO director Senior Supt. Felipe Natividad told dyRD Balita that local police forces maintained its alert level amid an issuance of a directive from the police regional command to launch preventive measures against NPA offensive operations after communist guerrillas attacked a police precinct in Binuangan town, Misamis Oriental on Sunday injuring four cops.
“It’s continuous that we’re reminding all the police stations to be [alert]. Ever since the Abu Sayyaf intrusion, we never let our guard down,” he said in Filipino and English.
According to Natividad, he has reminded police officers to regularly coordinate with barangay officials and residents in their respective areas to effectively launch counter measures against any attack from the insurgents.
The police’s intelligence network, which was crucial in crushing the 10-man Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) unit that infiltrated Bohol in April, has also been strengthened particularly in coastal areas, said Natividad.
The BPPO’s heightened alertness against the Maoist insurgents has been maintained since peace talks between the government and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines, the political arm of the Communist Party of the Philippines, broke down in May, he added.
The highest ranking police official in Bohol also called on the public to employ the same vigilance shown by Boholanos during the botched incursion of the ASG in the province.
Meanwhile, the Armed Forces of the Philippines, in a statement, said that nearly 300 NPA rebels have either been killed or arrested by government forces since peace talks started to stall in February.
The military noted that since then, 264 NPA rebels had either been killed or arrested, while 573 had voluntarily surrendered. (Rey Tutas)