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18,000 cops to be deployed as protests set on Labor Day

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Eighteen thousand policemen will be assigned to ensure peace and order situation before, after, and during the celebration of Labor Day on Monday.

“Our chief PNP, Gen. Benjamin Acorda, Jr., gave instructions that we exercise maximum tolerance and that our paramount consideration should be respect for human rights and freedom of expression and speech,” said Philippine National Police spokesperson Col. Jean Fajardo over ABS-CBN’s Teleradyo.

Acorda made the deployment of more policemen, two days after Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Benjamin Abalos Jr. tapped the PNP and local chief executives to ensure public safety during on Labor Day.

DIGNITY IN LABOR. File photo shows two workers who, along with millions of other Filipinos, will mark Labor Day tomorrow (Monday).

Various workers’ organizations are set to hold protest rallies Monday to demand a wage increase, end contractualization, and the full recognition of the right to freely unionize.

Fajardo said the deployed policemen will focus on freedom parks and other places of convergence where rallies will be held. She added some were designated to secure main thoroughfares and transport terminals.

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The National Capital Region Police Office on Saturday added it is prepared and all set to deploy a total of 10,529 policemen in all strategic areas around Metro Manila.

NCRPO director Maj. Gen. Edgar Allan Okubo also assured the readiness of more than a thousand members of Reactionary Standby Support Force (RSSF) from the Regional Headquarters for possible deployment today to augment local police forces tasked to man areas of concern.

Lateral coordination with other law enforcement agencies has been established for a more comprehensive security coverage.

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) meanwhile said Filipino workers will be treated to free rides at the Light Rail Transit (LRT) Line 2 on May 1.

The gesture will not only ease the financial burden of the workers but will also recognize their significant contributions to national development, it said.

The DOLE further said aside from offering job opportunities, it will put up more than 20 “Kadiwa ng Pangulo para sa Manggagawa” outlets to mark Labor Day.

The DOLE said 21 Kadiwa stalls will be at the venues of job fairs nationwide starting Sunday for entrepreneurs to sell their goods directly to consumers without trader-intermediaries.

Some of the available products from 606 enterprises and 1,223 sellers are vegetables; fruits such as bananas, mangoes, and pineapples; rice; fresh, dried, and smoked fish; meat products; eggs; sugar; and dairy products.

There will also be cacao products; processed foods like longganisa (local sausage); vinegar; crab paste; pickled vegetables; processed garlic; chili flakes; and noodles.

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