Churchgoers in the predominantly Catholic province were able to peacefully attend the traditional Misa de Gallo or nine-day dawn Masses which ended on Tuesday, December 24.
This was according Bohol Provincial Police Office (BPPO) director Col. Jonathan Cabal who assured that heightened security measures were implemented in church vicinities across the province.
There were no reported major incidents such as brawls or gunfire in and around churches during the celebration of dawn Masses as roving patrols were also deployed to secure churchgoers, some of whom walk to their nearest churches in the wee hours, the province’s top cop said.
“We are very happy na wala naman tayong narning na mga untoward incident, walang nagpaputok, walang nag-away, walang mga riot sa ating mga kabataan,” Cabal said.
The province of Bohol is also just known to observe the dawn Masses more solemnly than in other places, particularly in larger localities such as Metro Manila, he added.
According to Cabal, the Police Regional Office 7 issued a directive ordering its officers to establish increased visibility in key areas to ensure the safety of the throngs of churchgoers who flocked to churches.
“Binigyan natin ng directive ang ating mga kapulisan sa mga respective church nila na e-intensify yung police presence nila…na ang ating police very visible during Misa de Gallo,” he said.
Meanwhile, the police will maintain its heightened security operations for the Christmas break and the anniversary of the Communist Party of the Philippines on December 26.
The beefed up security will still be implemented despite the proposed ceasefire between the government and the communist insurgents during the holidays so as not to be caught off guard if surprise offensives are launched.
“Sabi ng ating regional director we have to be very careful pa rin and alert…hindi natin pwede sabihin na mag relax ang police natin,” he said. (RT)