Less people brought backpacks during ‘Araw ng Dabaw’

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Sunday, March 16, 2014

THERE'S one more prohibition that Dabawenyos and visitors alike simply followed, thus, making the work of security forces easier: the ban on use of backpacks and big bags in major activity areas of the Araw ng Dabaw celebration.

The ban on backpacks and big bags during big events was introduced last year, which saw over a thousand having to hand over their possessions to the police until after the activities. But this time, not one was confiscated. [Read: Police: No backpacks, No ‘suplados’]

"So far wala po tayong nakumpiska na backpacks ngayon unlike last year na 1,823 backpacks and sling bags ang na confiscate. Salamat din sa media for disseminating the info and of course, sa public for their cooperation," said Supt. Joel Consulta, chief of the San Pedro Police Station.


There were, however, a few seen carrying backpacks who were inspected and advised by peripheral guards not to proceed to the activity areas.

Over-all, it was a successful and peaceful celebration of the 77th Araw ng Dabaw amid security threats in nearby areas that earlier made the authorities think several times whether to stage some of the major events at People's Park.

Davao City Police Office (DCPO) director Senior Supt. Vicente D Danao said no crime was reported at the Sayawan sa Dan which was held on San Pedro Street last Saturday, after a proposal to hold it at People's Park for added security, and the Sunday's Parada Dabawenyo with 230 participants.

"Though there were petty crime incidents, such as robbery that transpired in some residential areas, overall the celebration was successful," Danao said.

Records at the DCPO's Investigation and Detection Management Branch (IDMB) showed no major crimes except two robbery incidents -- one in Talomo and the other in Buhangin area on March 15.

The assessment on the peace and order was shared by Task Force Davao (TFD) Colonel Casiano Monilla, who thanked the public for their cooperation.

Monilla said the authorities had been constantly conducting foot and mobile patrols and random checkpoints in all entry and exit points of the city. He added that there were also troops on a chopper who were monitoring from above.

The police and military earlier placed Davao City under heightened alert and deployed around 4,500 personnel, including the barangay police from 182 villages, to ensure the safety of the people, especially that thousands of tourists, spectators, local and foreign delegates expected to visit the city this month.

Davao City Mayor Rodrigo R. Duterte earlier ordered the authorities, including other government employees to participate on the event and implement its security measures as tight as under Martial Law.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on March 17, 2014.

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