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Opinion

EDITORIAL - Keeping criminals at bay

The Freeman

The general perception is that police visibility is a vital tool in preventing crimes. Any locality where the authorities are visible will never have a problem with peace and order because any criminal will have second thoughts about pushing through with his evil plans.

Stressing the importance of police visibility, Police Regional Office-7 director Prudencio Tom Bañas led his men in conducting foot patrol in Cebu City's downtown area as part of the heightened campaign against criminality.

In his directive, Bañas said every member of the police force across Central Visayas must go out of the station and spend hours patrolling the streets as part of the crime prevention efforts.

His move is in compliance with the order of the Philippine National Police's new chief increasing foot patrol among policemen across the country. Director General Ricardo Marquez, who visited Cebu last week, said he wants more policemen manning the streets to deter crimes.

Such order, at least, is a sign of a heightened crusade against lawless elements and is meant to bring the police closer to the people. Of course, a community that constantly feels the presence of the police would always feel safe.

Vulnerability stems from the absence of security. And when a place lacks police presence, peace and order is greatly jeopardized.

A case in point was the early morning ambush of a Barangay Lorega San Miguel businessman, who was killed when an unidentified gunman opened fire just as he stopped at the corner of Colon and Osmeña Boulevard.

Mayor Michael Rama has questioned the absence of the police during the brazen attack, which caught the authorities by surprise. He said he wondered how the crime occurred in a busy area and immediately gathered all security stakeholders in the city to discuss measures to prevent such incident.

Like a virus aggressively attacking the human body when the immune system is weak, crimes happen when security is lax. While the public hails the new PNP initiative increasing foot patrol in busy areas, keeping criminals at bay largely depends on how such measure is sustained.

ATILDE

BARANGAY LOREGA SAN MIGUEL

CEBU CITY

CENTRAL VISAYAS

COLON AND OSME

DIRECTOR GENERAL RICARDO MARQUEZ

MAYOR MICHAEL RAMA

PHILIPPINE NATIONAL POLICE

POLICE

POLICE REGIONAL OFFICE

PRUDENCIO TOM BA

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