TAGUM CITY, Davao del Norte, Philippines—Mayor Allan L. Rellon ordered local authorities today to intensify local checkpoints on all entry points of Tagum City, in a swift pre-emptive measure following the siege of the Islamic City of Marawi which prompted the declaration of Martial Law in Mindanao by President Rodrigo Duterte.
Speaking before an urgent meeting he convened today, Mayor Rellon ordered the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National Police to augment personnel manning the city’s entry and exit points.
Taking cue from other security measures deployed by other cities in Mindanao, the local chief executive ordered local authorities to heighten their pre-emptive measures so as to prevent terror activities from happening in the city, which is Mindanao’s most populous component city.
He also cited that this is crucial especially that big events will be hosted by the city this year, top-billed by the 6th ASEAN Scout Jamboree in November.
Both the AFP and PNP, as ordered by Mayor Rellon, will be jointly assisted by the team from the local government’s Security Management and Traffic Management Offices, respectively.
On their part, the Task Force Tagum—a special unit assigned by AFP to secure the city—remains on a high alert status and is in direct coordination with the Philippine National Police in the monitoring of actions of suspicious personalities as well as the confiscation of firearms with no legal documents.
This was the off-shot of the special joint meeting of the City Peace and Order Council, City Anti Drug Abuse Council and the City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council convened by Mayor Rellon last May 24, 2017 where they discussed the mechanisms in place to secure the city as well as to allay fears of some citizens regarding the declaration of Martial Law.
Authorities ensured that the civil rights of the citizens is still their highest priority despite the declaration of martial law.
Atty. Randy de Gala, the city legal officer, pointed out that Tagumenyos should dismiss their fears regarding Martial Law, stressing that the suspension of the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall apply only to persons judicially charged for rebellion or offenses inherent in, or directly connected with, invasion.
They also called on civilians to be very vigilant and to immediately report to them any suspicious personalities in their respective areas.
Meanwhile, the City Government of Tagum extended its full support to President Rodrigo Duterte’s declaration of Martial Law in Mindanao, saying such is necessary and justified to combat terrorism and defeat rebellion. It condemned the terror acts of lawless elements in Marawi which prompted the president to place Mindanao under the state of Martial Law.
“The peace-loving people of Marawi certainly does not deserve this act of terror. The people of Tagum extends the hand of solidarity to the residents of Marawi who are suffering in terror,” stressed Mayor Rellon in his official statement. He added that he is confident that “the national government will be able to solve this conflict in due time, given the extraordinary leadership of President Duterte.” Louie Lapat/CIO Tagum