By Antonio L. Colina IV and Keith Bacongo
DAVAO CITY – Police authorities here conducted Thursday “Oplan Bolabog”, a house-to-house verification in some barangays, known to be “havens” of criminals and suspected terrorists, after President Rodrigo Duterte declared Martial Law in Mindanao effective May 23, 2017.
In a press conference Thursday, Davao City Police Office (DCPO) spokesperson Senior Insp. Maria Teresita Gaspan said some 161 individuals were taken to police headquarter for “profiling” writing for failure to present their identification, but assured they would be released if they do not have involvement in terrorism and rebellion.
She said authorities captured suspected individuals with standing warrants of arrest for other crimes, with the conduct of “Oplan Bolabog”, which initially covered the Barangay Mini-Forest, and maintained the police will have to do this to beef up their monitoring mechanism on the movement of people who are non-residents entering the city.
“It’s applied to suspects charged with rebellion or any person involved or connected with rebellion or invasion; kung walang probable cause to indict for a crime, he could be released immediately,” she said.
She said police have not encountered resistance from any persons who were submissive for preliminary questioning as part of the city’s security measures.
She said they will observe police operation procedure in conducting “Oplan Bolabog” to ensure human rights are upheld and not curtailed.
“We ensure the public human rights shall always be upheld. We maintain our position that the work of police and military should be within human rights. Kung may abuses in furtherance of the enforcement of the law, we do not tolerate neither encourage. If there are abuses, report immediately to us, so we will conduct investigation,” she said.
She said authorities initially covered Barangay Mini-Forest, Davao City, a Muslim community dominated mostly by the Maranao tribe coming from Lanao del Sur province. Many of them are engaged in different businesses in the city such as selling DVDs, surplus clothes, mobile phones and other electronic gadgets.
She did not divulge the other locations to prevent compromising the police operations but said they would act on reports from “confidential informants.”
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