PNP prepares for implementation of expanded COVID-19 Alert Levels System

Robie de Guzman   •   October 20, 2021   •   257

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Wednesday said it has directed all provincial police offices across the country to prepare for the implementation of the COVID-19 Alert Levels System in other regions.

In a statement, PNP chief Police General Guillermo Eleazar said provincial police offices should ascertain that its personnel on the ground are well-informed of the regulations under each alert levels.

This is to ensure the orderly imposition of protocols and to avoid confusion among the public.

“Kasama ang inyong Philippine National Police sa natutuwa sa unti-unting pagbabalik sa normal ng sitwasyon sa ating bansa,” Eleazar said.

“But this will not be the reason for us to lower our guard because as the national government plans to expand the easing of restrictions beyond Metro Manila, I have already issued instructions to all our unit commanders to fully prepare for this in their respective areas of responsibility in order to ensure that this will not result in super spreader events,” he added.

The national government earlier announced that the COVID-19 Alert Level System being piloted in Metro Manila will be expanded outside the region from October 20 to October 31.

This came as protocols in Metro Manila were somehow eased and more establishments have been allowed to operate due to declining number of infections across the metro.

As announced by Malacañang, Negros Oriental and Davao Occidental will be under Alert Level 4 while those under Alert Level 3 include Cavite, Laguna, Rizal, Siquijor, Davao City and Davao del Norte.

Areas under Alert Level 2 are Batangas, Quezon, Lucena City, Bohol, Cebu City, Lapu-Lapu City, Mandaue City, Cebu, Davao de Oro, Davao del Sur, and Davao Oriental.

Eleazar appealed to the public to cooperate and comply with the rules being implemented to ensure their safety amid the continuing threat of COVID-19.

“Inaasahan din namin sa PNP na magkakaroon ng disiplina ang ating mga kababayan upang manatiling alerto upang matiyak ang kanilang kaligtasan dahil nananatiling banta ang COVID-19 lalo na kung hindi tayo mag-iingat at ipagsasawalang-bahala ang mga sakrispisyong ating nagawa sa mahigit isang taon ng pandemya,” he said.

Ombudsman junks CIDG petition vs Abayalde anew

Maris Federez   •   November 26, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Office of the Ombudsman has rejected anew the motion filed by the Philippine National Police-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (PNP-CIDG) seeking the reversal of the decision to acquit former PNP chief Police General Oscar Abayalde of graft charges filed against him.

In its resolution, the Ombudsman said the CIDG’s motion still lack sufficient evidence that will pin down Abayalde to the case.

The resolution added that the CIDG did not submit new arguments that will prove the involvement of the retired general in the case.

The CIDG filed graft charges against Abayalde for his alleged involvement in the anomalous drug operation of police authorities in Pampanga in 2013. —/mbmf

NTC, makikipag-ugnayan sa PNP at NBI para matunton ang nasa likod ng text scams

Robie de Guzman   •   November 23, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Makikipag-ugnayan ang National Telecommunications (NTC) sa pulisya at sa National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) para imbestigahan ang mga nasa likod ng text scams.

Ito ay kasunod na rin ng mga reklamo ng ilang mobile subscribers ukol sa natatanggap nilang mga text messages mula sa mga ‘di kilalang phone numbers na nag-aalok ng trabaho, o kaya ay pautang.

Ayon sa NTC, maraming paraan para makuha ang phone number ng isang indibiduwal na pinapadalhan ng spam texts.

Kabilang na dito ang listahan ng mga number na nagpapaload sa mga tindahan at sa contact tracing system ng mga establisimyento.

Pero giit ni NTC deputy commissioner Edgardo Cabarios, ipinagbabawal ang pagbibigay ng impormasyong ito sa ibang tao at paggamit rito para sa text scams.

“We can coordinate perhaps with NBI at police para surveillance, ano, ma-determine sino yung mga yan—grupo ba sila or individual, et cetera, et cetera,” ani Cabarios.

Payo ng NTC sa publiko, huwag magbigay ng personal na impormasyon kung makakatanggap ng mga ganitong mensahe.

Maaari namang i-block ng NTC ang phone number ng mga gumagawa ng ganitong aktibidad kung hihilingin ng mga magrereklamo.

Kung makakatanggap ng text scams, maaari itong ireport sa NTC Central Office Consumer Welfare and Protection Division sa mga numerong (+63) (02) 8920-4464; (+63) (02) 8926-7722; at (+63) (02) 8921-3251.

Maaari ding magpadala ng mensahe sa e-mail address ng NTC na consumer@ntc.gov.ph. (Mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Asher Cadapan Jr.)

Establishments violating public health protocols may face closure, safety seal revocation – DILG

Robie de Guzman   •   November 18, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) has warned of  sanctions against establishments that are not complying with minimum public health standards and other guidelines set under the COVID-19 Alert Levels System.

In a statement, DILG Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said establishments violating COVID-19 safety rules and regulations may face suspension of their business permits or revocation of their safety seals.

Malaya said the DILG has been receiving complaints related to violation of operational capacity limits and failure to implement the requirement of allowing fully vaccinated individuals only in indoor establishments such as restaurants, amusement parks, recreational venues, fitness studios and gyms, etc.

“Many restaurants and indoor establishments are not checking the vaccination status of their customers and are violating the 50% operational capacity for indoor establishments and 70% operational capacity of outdoor establishments,” he said.

He said that these establishments are “strongly warned” that government will revoke the Safety Seals issued to them which will deprive them of the additional 10% operational capacity as well as lose the badge of honor that they are compliant with all public health standards against COVID-19.

For repeat violators or those without Safety Seals, the DILG said it will recommend the revocation of their business permits issued by the Local Government Unit (LGU) concerned.

The department has asked all LGUs and the Philippine National Police (PNP) to conduct more inspections of establishments to ensure compliance with COVID-19 guidelines.

LGUs were also told to issue show cause orders against violators.

“We cannot be complacent at this time. Even if cases are going down and vaccination is going up, we cannot put our guard down. Look at Europe, their vaccination rate is high but they are now undergoing a new surge. Vigilance will prevent another surge,” said Malaya.

According to Malaya, the DILG has directed all LGUs to create Inspection and Certification Teams (ICT) to lead in the granting of the Safety Seal to establishments compliant with the MPHS. Uniformed personnel of the PNP and the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) may also be deputized by LGUs to conduct Safety Seal inspections if they lack the personnel to do so.

The DILG likewise urged the public report violations to the concerned issuing authority of the Safety Seal – the DTI, DILG, DOLE, DOT or LGUs – for investigation and imposition of appropriate sanctions.

Violations by business establishments with safety seals issued by the DILG or LGUs may be reported to the DILG Public Assistance Hotline 892-50343; 892-51144; 09274226300; 09313849272.

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