22 July 2021 – The Baguio City Police Office (BCPO) recently embraced the implementation of tighter border control regulations to prevent individuals from freely entering the city amidst the emerging threat of the new Corona Virus Disease (COVID) 2019 variants to prevent any untoward incident that will cause the surge in cases in the future.
BCPO operations chief Lt. Col. Domingo Gambican stated that it has been a trend that there is a significant increase in motorists coming up to the city starting every Friday up to the weekend that is why there is a need to deploy additional law enforcers to manage the main quarantine checkpoints along Marcos highway, Naguilian road, Kennon road and Benguet-Nueva Vizcaya Road.
Further, pass-through travelers are also required to secure pass-through passes in their entry points and leave the same in their exit points to ensure proper monitoring of their travel and to ensure that the said motorists are really passing through the city.
The police official claimed that one of the problems being encountered by the law enforcers managing the checkpoints is the insufficient personnel to escort the travelers to the city’s central triage based at the Baguio Convention Center thus the need for augmentation from the nearest police station purposely to escort the motorists for them to undergo the required triaging.
According to him, police personnel managing the different checkpoints also lack the appropriate rain gear making it difficult to perform their assigned duties and responsibilities during a heavy downpours that cause travelers to freely pass through the established quarantine checkpoints en route to the city and other desired destinations.
Gambican revealed that during weekends, the bulk of the police personnel deployed in the different checkpoints are tapped to augment the main entry points of the city to ensure that all motorists and travelers wanting to enter the city possess the appropriate registration with the different platforms and the supporting documents for them to be allowed to pass through the border control points.
However, he stipulated that there are instances when travelers are able to sneak into the city but the same are isolated instances.
The BCPO officer assured the public that the police personnel are doing their best to exercise their assigned duties and responsibilities in the enforcement of the entry protocols to the city and travelers and motorists should cooperate by presenting to the quarantine checkpoints authentic documents to avoid unnecessary delays in their travel to the city.
Moreover, he stipulated that the other programs, projects and activities of the local police force is not compromised by their having to maintain the existing quarantine checkpoints because there are other police personnel who had been assigned to do the crime prevention and other related functions to sustain the city as a good place to study, live, work and do businesses being the country’s undisputed Summer Capital.
He revealed that the local police force will continue to implement guidelines governing the operation of quarantine checkpoints from the inter-agency task force for the management of emerging infectious diseases and from the local government. – Dexter A. See