27,000 cops on full alert for SEA Games 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Some 27,000 cops were placed on full alert beginning Monday, November 25, to secure the 2019 Southeast Asian Games.

"Full alert status is now placed over police regional offices 1, 3, 4A, and NCRPO (National Capital Region Police Office), and national support units effective 8 in the morning today," police spokesman Brigadier General Bernard Banac announced in a Camp Crame press briefing.

The police offices handle the Ilocos, Central Luzon, Calabarzon, and Metro Manila regions, where games will be held for the biennial regional multisport event from November 30 to December 11.

The full alert status will end on December 14, to make way for securing the departure of foreign athletes.

Placing cops on full alert means that their vacation leaves are canceled and that they would have to work overtime to maximize police visibility for the multibillion-peso event. Cops will also direct traffic, a crucial task for an event that has faced logistical fiascos even before its ceremonial opening.

The men and women in blue are joined by agents from the Armed Forces of the Philippines, the Office of Civil Defense, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority, and the Bureau of Fire Protection.

At sea, the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) deployed some 1,000 personnel to secure water-based sporting events like surfing.

The PCG also deployed 25 rigid hull inflatable boats, aluminum boats, and small boats to La Union and Subic, Zambales. – Rappler.com

Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers security, crime, and the city of Manila for Rappler. He was chosen as a Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs.