THE Police Regional Office 1 leadership headed by Brigadier General Emmanuel B. Peralta yesterday apologized to the Department of Education (DepEd) for the apparent ‘over-reaction’ by some members of the Alaminos City Police Station who were seen armed with automatic rifles while guarding a local elementary school.
In a report to Philippine National Police (PNP) chief, General Dionardo B. Carlos, the PRO1 director said members of the Alaminos City police were deployed to the Longos Central Elementary School in Barangay Pangabisan last Monday upon the request of school officials to secure the 1st day of the pilot testing of ‘face-to-face classes’ in their area.
It turned out that the school officials requested the local police’s assistance in ensuring that minimum public health standards specifically the wearing of face masks and face shields and observance of physical distancing were observed in the area as they continued their efforts to help prevent the further spread of the deadly COVID-19 virus.
Brig. Gen. Peralta explained that the officer-in-charge of the Alaminos City police identified as Major Reinwexk Alamay promptly acted on the local school officials’ request by sending his men to the area.
The local policemen were augmented by members of the 1st Pangasinan Provincial Mobile Force Company and EOD-K9 to provide assistance and security in the school premises.
“The police units only had pure good intention in acting on the request of school officials,” said Peralta. He likewise emphasized that they will always according to their mandate of promoting nation-building among their stakeholders, members of the teaching community included.
However, he added that it was just unfortunate that some persons may have felt intimidated by the presence of the armed PNP men in uniform.
Peralta said he has ordered an investigation to determine possible lapses in the said security deployment.
Moreover, he said that he has issued a memorandum reminding all PRO1 chiefs of police and mobile force commanders of the guidelines and protocols they must observe when visiting or securing school premises under the DepEd’s National Framework on Learners and Schools.