THE National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) will jam signals in parts of Quezon City as part of security preparations for the last State-of-the-Nation-Address (SONA) by President Rodrigo Duterte Monday afternoon.
According to NCRPO director, Major General Vicente D. Danao Jr., they will be implementing signal jamming particularly in areas near the Batasan Pambansa complex where anti-government protesters are expected to converge today.
Danao said they and the Q.C. local government have talked leaders of protesting groups into holding their mass actions in a limited area, of which the St. Peter’s Chapel in Tandang Sora will be the nearest point to Batasan Pambansa where they can converge.
“Hanggang St. Peter’s lang po maximum nilang puntahan. Unang-una, para ‘di makaabala sa traffic, at pangalawa, dahil may kinakaharap na pandemic para magkaiwasan sa sakit na puwedeng makuha,” the NCRPO chief said.
Philippine National Police (PNP) chief, General Guillermo Lorenzo T. Eleazar said they have not detected any threat to the President’s SONA but maintained that rallyists must fully comply with government health protocols to prevent further transmission of the virus especially the new Delta variant.
The top cop also encouraged groups to conduct online protests to minimize the risk of virus transmission.
As commander of the overall SONA security, Maj. Gen. Danao said they are already 100 percent prepared to ensure the peaceful and orderly conduct of the event.
He said that since last year, the preparation for SONA 2021 has been quite different from the previous years because of the pandemic outbreak all over the world, thus, they came up with more holistic and extensive security program.
The NCRPO chief said that a total of 15,174 public safety and security forces will be deployed from Welcome Rotonda, U.P. Diliman, Tandang Sora, Ever-Gotesco to IBP Road and to Metro Manila’s neighboring borders.
The NCRPO will be providing full support to the Presidential Security Group and the House of Representatives’ security force.
Danao and Q.C. Police District director, Brigadier Gen. Antonio C. Yarra also advised the public of temporary vehicle traffic rerouting in roads leading to and from the Batasan Pambansa complex.
Starting Sunday, he entire stretch of Commonwealth Avenue (North Bound) from Quezon City Memorial Circle/ Philcoa to Litex and IBP Road will be cleared of road and sidewalk obstructions and vehicles illegally parked vehicles will be towed.
By 6 a.m. Monday, Commonwealth Avenue (North Bound) will be closed for private vehicles and are advised to take the alternate route. Those from QCMC shall take North Ave., turn right to Mindanao Ave., or turn right to Visayas Ave. then turn left to Congressional or Tandang Sora Ave. then exit Mindanao Ave., turn right to Quirino Highway going to Commonwealth Extension passing thru right turn S&R Shopping Store landmark heading Southbound Lane.
Individuals/commuters residing along Commonwealth Avenue to Fairview may take the QCPD Libreng Sakay service traversing along the said routes.
The entire stretch of IBP Road may also be put under lockdown if heavy traffic occurs. All motorists re-routed from QCMC to Filinvest 1 and 2, Brgy Bagong Silangan and some inner portions of Brgy. Batasan Hills shall take Maharlika St., then turn left to Mayaman St., then turn right to Maginhawa St., turn left to Masinsinan St., then turn right to C.P. Garcia to Katipunan Ave., then take U-turn Slot in front of Miriam College then turn right to H. Ventura St, turn left to Heizer St. then turn right to Katipunan Ext, then take left turn to JP Rizal to San Mateo road to destination.
Motorists from Filinvest 1 Subdivision affected by traffic lockdown at IBP Road shall take Luzviminda St. to Cotabato St. then turn left to Sinagtala St. to Congressional St. leading to Batasan-San Mateo Road and exit to Marikina Road to destination.
Those from San Mateo Road to Filinvest 2 Subdivision/Bagong Silangan shall take Doña Franceska St. then turn left to Doña Juliana St. to King St. turn right to Don Vicente to Bagong Silangan/Filinvest Gate 2.
Motorists from Capitol Hills and Vista Real Executive Village going to QCMC may counter flow using the inner lane of Commonwealth Ave. (Northbound) to Zuazeregui to Katipunan.
“Ngayon pa lang po ay humihingi na kami ng paumanhin sa ating mga kababayan na maaapektuhan ng traffic at re-routing. Konting tiis at pasensya lang po sana upang hindi tayo magkaroon ng problema at maayos na maidaos ang huling State of the Nation Address ng ating Pangulong Duterte. Pinapaalalahanan din ang ating mga kababayan na wala namang gaanong importanteng gagawin sa labas na mangyari na lamang po na manatili tayo sa ating mga bahay hanggang matapos ang SONA at ng makaiwas din po sa lumalaganap na Covid 19, ang Delta Variant 19. Hangad namin ang kaligtasan ng lahat kung kayat makiisa tayo at magtulungan para sa ikabubuti nating lahat,” said Maj. Gen. Danao.
The NCRPO is also enforcing Gen. Eleazar’s move to suspend all gun permits issued to civilians in Metro Manila this week as part of their effort to keep the SONA trouble-free.
From 8 a.m. of July 21 until 8 a.m. of July 28, all Permit-to-Carry-Firearms-Outside-of-Residence or PTCFORs issued in Metro Manila have been temporarily suspended to ensure that the SONA will be free from firearms-related incidents and better ensure the safety of the public.
The memorandum issued last July 16 allows only members of the PNP and the Armed Forces and members of other law enforcement agencies who are performing official duties and in agency-prescribed uniform to carry firearms.
“We are prepared for all scenarios. In keeping with the Intensified Cleanliness Policy, we have conducted dialogues to establish coordination, cooperation, and understanding between the police, stakeholders, community leaders, and cause-oriented groups on self-policing, no-permit no-rally policy, traffic rerouting, and other public service so that we can attain our goal of a peaceful SONA,” Gen. Eleazar said.