By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
The Bacolod City Police Office (BCPO) has begun preparing security plans for next month’s MassKara Festival.
BCPO director, Police Colonel Noel Aliño said he would not take any chances this year, as the festival always ended up peacefully in previous years.
Aliño has also issued a stern warning to the organized crime syndicates outside Bacolod City that they are not welcome during the festival.
The city police will immediately respond if the syndicates’ presence is being monitored in the city.
“Kung mahuli ko kayo, mark my word, may paglalagyan kayo,” Aliño warned.
According to the BCPO director, they have more than 1,000 police personnel for the October festivities.
Aliño said he may seek additional police personnel during MassKara, to maximize the security in the six major festival sites.
He added that they are expecting an influx of foreign and domestic tourists during the festivities.
Aliño expressed no patience with criminal elements who have nothing else but to disrupt the peaceful celebration of the MassKara Festival from October 7 to 22 of this year.
At last year’s MassKara Festival, the BCPO uncovered a theft syndicate and arrested nine individuals, who most of them were from Metro Manila.
One of them was caught “red handed” allegedly using a stolen credit card to buy items at a shopping mall in the city.
The criminal syndicate managed to cart away a total of P150,000 from several victims, before they were finally dismantled by police.
BCPO discovered that the group wanted to take advantage of the festivities.
Last month, the BCPO announced it would step-up its anti-drug operations before the festivities following the confiscation of suspected shabu worth P23.12 million from two separate operations.
Police believe the high-value confiscations were a sign that the drug suspects have begun stocking up their supplies of shabu as it would become in demand during MassKara./DGB, WDJ