PNP chief Eleazar reminds police units to closely watch reopening of some tourist sites

Robie de Guzman   •   May 17, 2021   •   272

MANILA, Philippines — Philippine National Police (PNP) chief General Guillermo Eleazar on Monday directed all police units to closely monitor the reopening of some tourist sites and other leisure spots in Metro Manila and the provinces of Cavite, Bulacan, Rizal, and Laguna.

The said areas have been placed under general community quarantine (GCQ) with heightened restrictions from May 15 to 31.

Eleazar noted that over the weekend, some people have started visiting outdoor tourist attractions in GCQ areas, which were allowed to operate at 30 percent capacity.

Some areas in Intramuros, Manila, such as the Fort Santiago and the Baluarte de San Diego, have also opened their doors to visitors on Monday.

While Eleazar understands the excitement of most Filipinos over being able to finally go outdoors for leisure, he stressed the need to still take the necessary precautions against COVID-19 to prevent transmission.

“Inaasahan na namin ang pagdami ng mga taong magsisilabasan dahil nga nagkaroon ng adjustments sa allowed capacity rates ng ating business establishments at leisure areas. Ito ay amin nang napaghandaan at mahigpit na babantayan,” he said in a statement.

“Bagamat naiintindihan po namin na sabik na lumabas ng kani-kanilang mga bahay ang ating mga kababayan, gusto lang po naming magbigay ng paalala na posibleng mas tumagal pa tayo sa ganitong sitwasyon kung tayo ay lalabag sa IATF guidelines at hindi susunod sa minimum health safety protocols,” he added.

The PNP chief reminded police units to be on the lookout for violations of minimum public health safety protocols and to coordinate closely with local government units in securing tourist attractions and leisure spots.

He also urged the public to limit their movement to essential travels.

“We ask our kababayan within the NCR Plus to restrict their travel within the Bubble. At para naman doon sa mga nasa labas ng Bubble, huwag na po nating pilitin na pumasok pa unless essential travel po ang inyong lakad,” he said.

“Kung hindi po talaga natin maiiwasan ang paglabas, remember to always wear your face masks and face shields and observe physical distancing.”

He also reminded the management of businesses allowed to operate, including tourist spots and leisure areas, to strictly abide by the IATF guidelines on capacity rates and impose minimum health safety protocols on their patrons.

PDEA-PNP unified guidelines include sanctions for non-compliant operatives — Eleazar

Robie de Guzman   •   June 21, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The unified guidelines for the operations of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) will include penalties for police officers and agents who will fail to comply, police chief General Guillermo Eleazar said.

In a statement, Eleazar said the uniform operational guidelines, which are nearly finished, may be issued this month.

“I would like to stress that those who will not follow the unified rules will face sanctions. May kaakibat po na penalties ang guidelines para sa PDEA agents at PNP personnel na mapapatunayang sumuway sa uniform rules,” Eleazar said in a statement.

The PNP-PDEA uniform guidelines were created following the February 24 fatal shootout between the operatives at a mall along Commonwealth Avenue, Quezon City. An almost misencounter also transpired in Fairview in May, which highlighted the need for the two agencies’ leadership to finally address the issue.

“Kaya po natin ginawa ang guidelines na ito ay para maiwasan ang pagkakaroon ng misencounter o miscoordination sa pagitan ng PNP at PDEA. Mahigpit din po nating ipatutupad ang guidelines na ito dahil gusto natin na maging maayos at pulido ang koordinasyon ng ating mga anti-illegal drug operatives sa PDEA at PNP,” Eleazar said.

“Gaya ng nabanggit ni PDEA DG (director-general) Wilkins Villanueva, pipilitin ng PNP at PDEA na mailabas ang unified rules na ito bago matapos ang buwan. We will immediately disseminate these for the immediate compliance of our operating units,” he added.

The PNP chief directed police commanders to ensure that all their personnel are well briefed on the guidelines as he underscored the need for effective supervision to guarantee compliance.

“Once these unified operating guidelines are finalized and released to our men on the ground, I need the efficient supervision by our ground commanders to ensure that the rules are strictly followed by our operatives,” he said.

“This way, our law enforcement agencies would be more effective and efficient in carrying out their operations toward the eventual eradication of the country’s illegal drug trade,” he added.

PNP begins probe on death of ex-mayor Sabal

Aileen Cerrudo   •   June 18, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—The Philippine National Police (PNP) has begun its investigation on the death of Montasser Sabal, former mayor of Talitay town in Maguindanao.

“This operation which resulted in a death of a suspect, the Internal Affairs Service through their motu propio investigation will be conducting an investigation so we provided directive or guidance to the IAS just like any other operation that resulted in the death of the suspect,” according to PNP Chief P.Gen. Guillermo Eleazar.

Sabal was killed on Thursday after allegedly grabbing the service firearm of a police escort during his transport to Camp Crame in Quezon City.

Authorities were escorting Sabal towards the National Capital Region Field Unit of the CIDG at Camp Crame when he grabbed his police escort’s firearm.

Police heavily wounded Sabal and he was rushed to San Juan Medical Center. He was declared dead Thursday morning.

To remove any suspicion, Eleazar directed the motu propio investigation. -AAC (with reports from Lea Ylagan)

PNP to continue enforcing face shield rule until issuance of new guidelines – Eleazar

Robie de Guzman   •   June 18, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine National Police (PNP) will continue enforcing the protocol on the use of face shields as recommended by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID), police chief General Guillermo Eleazar said Friday.

In a statement, Eleazar said he has instructed police officers to continue enforcing the face shield policy but refrain from imposing any sanctions on violators.

He said those who would be found not wearing face shields will only be cautioned and reminded that there are still no existing guidelines that allow the non-wearing of face shields.

“The latest recommendation of the IATF to the President is to continue making mandatory the wearing of face shields in enclosed spaces, commercial areas, public transport, terminals and even places of worship,” he said.

“With this, we will continue to enforce the existing policy until the President decides on the matter and the IATF amends the guidelines,” he added.

The PNP chief said they will wait for the issuance of new guidelines based on the President’s decision.

“Kung may pagbabago man, hihintayin po ng PNP na maibaba ang amended guidelines para iyon ang aming ipatupad. Sa ngayon, status quo muna at susundin muna namin kung ano ang isinasaad ng guidelines para maiwasan ang pagkakaroon ng kalituhan ang publiko sa bagay na ito,” he said.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque on Thursday said the existing policy on the use of face shields against COVID-19 will remain in effect pending the decision of President Rodrigo Duterte on the recommendation of the IATF to continue the use of face shields in enclosed or indoor spaces.

The task force met on Thursday afternoon to discuss the policy on the use of face shields after some senators shared their conversation with Duterte in Malacañang about the limited use of face shield.

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