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Additional cops to boost fiesta order, security

NAGA CITY --- An additional augmentation force of 1,500 police personnel from other police stations in the region will be deployed to provide security and order during the 9-day novena of the Penafrancia fiesta.

Penafrancia religious festivities will start on Friday next week, September 13, with the traditional Traslacion or foot procession and wind up on Sunday off the following week, September 22.

Other civic, cultural and social activities have been lined up even before, during, and after the religious fiesta.

The Security and Public Safety cluster of the multi-agency coordination group, along with other incident management teams and other groups under the Joint Operations Center had been activitated by City Mayor Nelson Legacion to ensure a safe and peaceful celebration of the fiesta, considered as the country’s biggest Marian festival.

In an interview, Police Colonel Felix Servita, director of the Naga City Police Office, on Tuesday morning disclosed that the requested additional police force take care of control and security during the various fiesta activities when large number of pilgrims, devotees, and tourists will be coming to the city to join the celebration.

He said that the forces from 9th Infantry Division (9ID) of Philippine Army, Public Safety Office (PSO), Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP), Philippine Airforce, and Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) will also be sending their contingents for their defined roles in providing a comprehensive and well-coordinated security plan for the duration of the Penafrancia fiesta.

Servita said that the BFP and PSO will serve as additional forces for traffic control, the Airforce for air reconnaissance, and the Coast Guard to serve as guardians of the waters, especially along the Naga River.

Meanwhile, Servita warned everyone to be cautious and extra alert against pickpockets, con artists, and robbers that swarm during fiestas when large number of people and visitors converge.

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