PCG nabs 9 Badjaos sneaking by boat to Bohol from Palawan
CORTES, Bohol June 14 (PIA) — Strong community participation in securing Bohol shores from breaches of undocumented persons during the general community quarantine bids well for the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) Western Bohol on June 8, 2020.
Tasked with keeping guard to make sure that no potential COVID-19 carriers cross the boundaries to Bohol, the PCG under Lt. Junior Grade Tristan Jener Erediano and Lt. Patrick John Cabasag head the water security cluster of the Task Force Laban COVID-19 have been engaging communities to help in guarding Bohol shores, many of which are uninhabited stretches which the undermanned PCG could not effectively cover.
The task is made easier when Badjao Chieftain Mario Cuham informed PCG about a Bohol-bound motorized banca from Palawan, boarded by nine stranded Badjaos returning to Bohol.
Immediately, Bohol Sub-Station Commander along with PGC personnel checked the veracity of the report by contacting Totolan Brgy. Capt. Raldo Rollorazo.
Rollorazo confirmed that a female resident of the Badjao Village has informed his office that her husband is arriving with eight more Badjaos, all without travel permits and thus, have no medical certificates stating they are cleared of COVID-19.
The Badjaos on board the boat was in violation of the no-sail policy as well as sailing without travel documents and clearances.
PCG set up an intercept team, making sure that the passengers would be immediately placed in isolation.
By about 6:30 p.m., PCG deployed Aluminum Boat 084 (AB-084) with four personnel to intercept and apprehend the reported motor banca.
By about 7:30 p.m., the PCG team spotted the motor banca about 500 meters while navigating to enter the Tagbilaran Channel.
Immediately the PCG personnel hailed the motorbanca captain and asked for travel documents for persons on board and the motorbanca registration papers.
Aside from no travel documents for the passengers and no medical certificates proving they have undergone COVID-19 tests, the motorized banca was also unregistered.
When confirmed that the banca was the same boat reportedly from Palawan, the authorities apprehended the boat captain and the passengers, and escorted them to Dauis Bridge docking area for turnover to Dauis local authorities.
PCG authorities identified the Badjaos as Comlon Catingalan, of legal age; Jamlon Catingalan, male, 22 years old; Jason Catingalan, male,15 years old; Allan Catingalan, male, 17 years old; Mona Canani, female, 15 years old; Vilma Canani, female, 16 years old; Ivone Canani, female, 10 years old; Albea Canani, female, of legal age; and Cosme Canani, male, of legal age.
Erediano said the passengers and boat crew were immediately turned over to Totolan barangay officials for their mandatory quarantine, and they towed the unregistered banca to be placed under custody of the Coast Guard Tagbilaran Substation.
He added that after the mandatory 14 days of quarantine for the boat passengers and crew, the PCG would initiate the filing of appropriate charges against the nine persons for series of serious violations of the no-sail policy, quarantine laws, and several other transgressions.
Over this, the PCG thanked the concerned citizens who helped them and emphasized their call to relatives of locally stranded individuals attempting to come home to Bohol to follow the travel protocols. (rahc/PIA-7/Bohol)