Celso urges intensified efforts beyond borders PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 14 January 2013 14:59

To ensure speedy response to crimes crossing sea boarders, Mayor Celso Lobregat has underscored the need for a law enforcement unit that can exert all efforts beyond the land and sea borders of Zamboanga and other parts of the region.

Lobregat, who chairs the City Peace and Order Council (CPOC), aired this concern during the council meeting Saturday where the abduction of an eatery owner from Maasin was discussed.

He said police and military authorities can only do so much and will have to coordinate efforts with other units operating outside Zamboanga in order to expand search and rescue operations whenever crime incidents such as abduction occurs.

The victim, 50-year old Edgar Fabella was forcibly taken by five armed men from his store-carinderia in Maasin around 6:40pm Friday, January 11. Three of the 5 suspects boarded him onto a motorboat docked at the shoreline across his store and sped towards the direction of Sta. Cruz Island. The two others who acted as lookouts sped away with a motorcycle towards the west coast.

Lobregat said with their jurisdiction limited only to Zamboanga City area, local police and military authorities cannot operate outside Zamboanga.

“There has to be really an effort beyond the city of Zamboanga, beyond Region 9”, Lobregat declared justifying that police authorities cannot operate outside their jurisdiction whenever crime incidents go beyond the borders, delaying operations. “Coordinative efforts have to be done and it is hard for us to get full support and cooperation”.

On several occasions, some victims are abducted in the city and were released in other cities or provinces while several others were abducted in other areas and were released in the city.

“In the end there has to be a force like the old Philippine Constabulary (PC), whose jurisdiction and areas had no limit and boundaries”, he said adding “I think that can be one of the solutions where authorities can go beyond borders”.

Nevertheless, despite the intricacies in the operational procedure for the search and rescue of abduction victims, the authorities are doing their best efforts to be able to resolve the latest incident the soonest possible time, he concluded. — Sheila Covarrubias