New Siquijor police chief counts on support of Siquijodnons
SIQUIJOR, June 26 (PIA) — While laying out his plans for Siquijor province, newly installed Siquijor Provincial Police (SPPO) officer-in-charge, PCol. Engelbert Soriano, is counting on the support of all Siquijodnons as the governor and the whole officialdom gear towards the development of the island.
“With your support we cannot go wrong. So, it’s not about me, it’s about the peace and order of this very lovely province,” Soriano said in a meeting with the SPPO Provincial Advisory Council (PAC) recently, which he also echoed during the separate PIA-DICT “Straight from the Source” interview.
Asked about his plans for Siquijor province, Soriano assured that the provincial police force will do its best to maintain the COVID-19 free status of the island.
“Siquijor is a very beautiful and peaceful province that’s why I always tell PNP Siquijor to exert efforts to maintain this status. We’re doing our very best on our designated task to maintain this situation,” he said.
He said the General Community Quarantine (GCQ) status of the province gives Siquijor a little advantage. “Fortunately in 2020, we don’t have any accident involving homicide, only damage to properties and some minor physical injuries,” he shared.
He said the control points in six municipalities along the circumferential road in Siquijor have done well in maintaining balance around their areas of responsibility with reduced crime incidence in 2020 as a result of the stay-at-home policy and other quarantine measures being implemented amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
The major concern, he said, is the implementation of the traffic laws, which led him to his next plan for Siquijor: improving the enforcement of laws and ordinances, and convincing the local government units (LGUs) to ask for a comprehensive traffic ordinance covering the whole province of Siquijor to be able to manage and generate revenues out of the violators of traffic laws.
He said the PNP is stricter now to complement with the Land Transportation Office (LTO) in terms of implementing the “no helmet” law and cited that while there were no major incidents on other forms of criminalities, traffic violations become a challenge in the current peace and order situation.
“This is a good challenge for the police to look into reckless imprudence around the island,” he said, aside from the enforcement of the mandatory wearing of masks, curfews, and observance of other health protocols.
He said he will also look into the morale and welfare of personnel starting with the giving of awards for best performing police stations and personnel in July and improve the services of PNP Siquijor.
On tourism, Soriano said that in case the tourism industry re-opens in the island, he will have another program to address the additional influx of tourists.
“We are prepared to address all of these,” he said, assuring that despite Siqujor having no problem on internal security, the PNP is not relaxing. “We are always on alert, on checkpoint and on coastal patrols,” he said.
He said everybody is praying that Siqujor soon re-opens for tourists. “Sayang na man kung hindi maenjoy ang kagandahan ng Siquijor,” he quipped.
But Soriano also warned Siquijodnons and the Siquijor police during the PAC meeting that “if anything happens, if what is normal and usual changes to worst, we should be ready to face it.”
“Yes Siquijor is peaceful, that’s correct, that’s according to experience but what we are doing here is to aim for more development and it is a natural occurrence that when you aim for development, criminals start to come in also. We are watching out for that, we do not allow criminals and allow them to destroy the peacefulness of this province while we do nothing,” Soriano said, while also pointing out during the PAC meeting that the problems cannot be addressed when they are there already.
“We have to see and to look far away and try to anticipate potential problems. With your support we cannot go wrong,” he said.
Formerly the chief of Regional Investigation Detection and Management Division of the Police Regional Office (PRO-7), Soriano assumed as the OIC Provincial Director in Siquijor where he submitted himself for a 14-day mandatory quarantine in a designated quarantine facility in Salagdoong, Maria, Siquijor prior to his actual duty in Camp Caipilan, Siquijor, Siquijor. (rac/PIA7-Siquijor)