The National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) has reported that a total of 671 guns were confiscated and 1,300 people arrested in Metro Manila during the five-month election period.
“As the election period officially culminated on June 8, the National Capital Region Police Office gained laurels on its 157 days of ensuring a safe, secured, accurate, fair and free elections 2022,” said NCRPO director Maj. Gen. Felipe Natividad.
The Commission on Elections (Comelec) prohibited from Jan. 9 to June 8 the carrying of firearms and deadly weapons by unauthorized persons outside residence or place of business, and in all public places; engage the services of security personnel, and transport firearms and explosives, including its spare parts and components, among others.
Violators faced imprisonment from one year to six years years, permanent disqualification from public office and loss of right to vote, and deportation for foreigners.
“Starting Jan. 9, 2022, police vigilance and visibility has threatened criminals through maximized conduct of checkpoints,” Natividad said.
The NCRPO and the five command units in Metro Manila – Manila, Quezon City, and the Northern, Southern and Eastern police districts – with the help from the Armed Forces of the Philippines enforced the policy by putting up 30, 643 checkpoints in strategic areas and conducted 1,313 police operations.
Also seized during the election period were 672 bladed and pointed weapons, 15 grenades, 15 explosives and 4,043 ammunitions.
The NCRPO served a total of 12 search warrants, two warrants of arrest, conducted 912 patrol responses, and 326 Oplan Bakal, Oplan Sita and buy bust operations.
“On its actual day, the National and Local Elections in Metro Manila was generally peaceful, however, the responsibilities of police officers did not stop the day after. Instead, law enforcers amplified post-election operations including the maintenance of peace and order during mass protests launched by different activists who expressed their discontentment with the poll results,” said Natividad.
A Media Action Center (MAC) was also established to centralize the monitoring of election-related reports and results. It also served as a platform to ensure the synchronous, accurate and factual release of news and data from the police force.
Natividad said MAC was helpful in monitoring the condition and security of media practitioners, resulting in safer delivery of news and public affairs to the people.