CARMEN, BOHOL, May 24, (PIA)---- WHEN you have a world famed tourist destination in your midst, crime is non negotiable.
Smarting from successfully mediating for the surrender of 11 assorted loose fire-arms, Carmen town Mayor Conchita Toribio-delos Reyes and police authorities summed this up to the local media during the recent Talakayan Sa Isyung Pulis (TSIP), which her town hosted.
Carmen town hosts the marvelous Chocolate Hills, which is currently visited by a daily average of 2,500 local and foreign tourists, the town’s proverbial goose that lays the golden eggs.
With this huge load on her shoulders, delos Reyes hit the ground running upon her assumption, as she immediately italicized security for the town by enhancing police visibility as a top priority.
According to town police chief Senior Inspector Ramoncillo Sawan, delos Reyes’ conviction of delivering her non categorical assurance of security to the tourism industry can be seen with the immediate establishment of a joint team of the police and army to comprise Task Force Carmen early in her term.
The Task force sets up a team of army and police quick response team on standby at the Chocolate Hills Complex and can be pulled out to respond to any other emergency crisis situation, he said.
Carmen also hosts the army’s 802nd Brigade which further boosts the town’s response capability for any threat.
Sawan said the task force is committed to secure tourists as well as the complex from any potential threat of terrorism and other forms of criminality.
To equip the task force, delos Reyes also gave two more mobility assets in motorcycles as well as communications equipment; hand-held two-way radios for the police, the former Camp Dagohoy deputy chief of police operations added.
“We are making sure that we are using the intelligence funds right,” pressed Mayor delos Reyes.
On top of Sawan’s concerns however as town to cop is the presence of loose fire-arms in the town.
These firearms have been so far used to perpetrate criminal activities from small time threats to robberies to and even hold-ups, criminal chart trends reveal.
Barely four months in his new assignment, the soft-spoken police officer said they are still strengthening their information network to get through the matter.
In his brief stint as town chief, Sawan reports that they have facilitated the surrender of 11 fire-arms buts still adds, “We have not found out where these fire-arms come from, who are the suppliers.”
He said since most of the loose firearms here come from gunsmiths in nearby Cebu, they could find men who could get them information on who has them.
We are now developing personalities, and perhaps in a few more weeks, we can make some positive action.
On the other hand, he said they are not discounting the fact that these loose fire-arms would be those left behind by fleeing armed rebels.
He also reiterated that with the full support of the delos Reyes Administration, and the help of communities, they could finally make a dent on curbing these crimes. (Rey Anthony Chiu)