Lobregat orders police to step up security in mosques PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 18 August 2012 14:26

Mayor Celso Lobregat yesterday ordered the City Police Office and Task Force Zamboanga to intensify security in the different mosques and other places of worship, as the Muslim community ends the holy month of Ramadan.

The mayor’s directive was issued during the meeting of the City Crisis Management Committee which he convened Friday morning following the twin blasts in Guiwan and Suterville Thursday night.

The mayor said the deployment of security personnel in different mosques specifically within the city proper area will help ensure the safety and protection of Islam devotees in line with the observance of Eid’l Fitri or the end of the fasting month of Ramadan during weekend.

Councilor Abdurahman Nuño during the meeting expressed concern about security in mosques especially with the explosion near the mosque in Suterville in Campo Islam Thursday night.

He said Muslims will flock to mosques for their religious rituals in observance of Eid’l Fitri, which is declared upon the sighting of the crescent moon anytime today and tomorrow.

Mayor Lobregat said the police and military will have to step up the measures to ensure that no such incident will happen again.

City Police OIC Director Col. James Mejia and Task Force Zamboanga Chief Col. Buenaventura Pascual assured that they will devise ways and means on how to deploy security to mosques within the 7 kilometer radius.

The CMC meeting yesterday also resulted to the creation of “Task Group 9224-Suterville” to probe on the twin explosions that happened in Guiwan and Suterville Thursday night.

7 persons were wounded—6 of which have been discharged from the hospital the same night when an improvised explosive devise ripped through Rural Transit bus 9224 while unloading passengers near the bus terminal in Guiwan from Pagadian around 9:30pm Thursday. A second explosion rocked Suterville in Campo Islam near a mosque at 10:45pm, barely an hour after. Nobody was hurt in the second incident.

Other measures were also discussed to help solve the same and to prevent the same incident in the future.

Also present during the CMC meeting were House Deputy Speaker and District I Representative Beng Climaco, Councilor Abdurahman Nuño, PSSupt. Ramon Ochotorena, representing Police Regional Director PCSupt. Napoleon Estilles, Task Force Zamboanga Chief Col. Buenaventura Pascual, representatives from the Rural Transit Bus company and other members of the committee. — Sheila Covarrubias