By: Rey Anthony Chiu
PANGLAO, Bohol, Aug 26 (PIA) --A grossly outnumbered force and tourist police complement keeps Panglao a haven for tourists peace, how do they do that?
Tasked with keeping peace and order for the almost 26,000 Panglao-anons and the daily influx of local and foreign tourists, the men in blue here have an ace in their sleeves however.
The Police Integrated Patrol System (PIPS) is the key, admits PInspector Cesar Acompañado, who said the system allows them to make do with the scant resources available to him and his force.
Panglao’s alluring beaches and its homey resorts coupled with world class dive sites has made the town a popular destination for local and foreign tourists, adding more concern to the police as tourism is sensitive to issues of peace and order.
Through foresight and the strict implementation of the PIPS, Panglao police has seen a 78.5 percent decrease in crimes on the period from January 1 to August 15 compared to last year, said Panglao police deputy chief.
From January to August of 2010, Panglao police blotter recorded 49 crimes, according to Acompañado.
This year, with the implementation of the PIPS, he reported at the Talakayan sa Isyung Pulis (TSIP) at the Flushing Meadows Resort Tuesday, that the station recorded only 16 crimes.
Bohol PSSupt. Constantino Barot and his leadership at Camp Dagohoy adopted the PIPS, which focuses on three crime areas and approaches criminology scientifically.
PIPS makes police crime response effective by getting to profile crime situations and apply these formats to future crime responses and preventive patrols, explains Police Deputy Regional Director for Operations Louie Oppus.
Oppus, former Tagbilaran City Police chief before his promotion to a higher post in Cebu said PIPS profiles crime maps, crime days and crime clock to determine where and when to conduct mobile and foot patrols for crime deterrence.
This is also complemented by a checkpoint manned by police officers who know what they are doing, he stressed.
The checkpoints are manned by at least eight police officers who know what they are doing and are doing it right, Oppus said.
For Panglao, aside from the strict PIPS implementation, he also admitted before the media gathered at the forum that deterring crimes also means letting people know that somebody watches over them.
When our intelligence network reports a stranger in town without a clear business interest, the police initiates contact with the person.
Even the complimentary Tourist Police assigned at the Bolod detachment agree that the PIPS has raised the bar of police service in the area of tourism.
Made a template for the national implementation of the tourist police, Bohol’s initiative at putting up more police visibility in tourist areas through foot and beat patrols or bike and mobile patrols has cut police response time, reports PInspector Cesar Misola.
Misola, Tourist Police Chief said the unit has signed a memorandum of agreement with tourist establishments in their area of responsibility to have police officers on visibility patrols in the areas with a bulk of tourists to watch. (30)