FEATURE Visayas cops sent for Zambo crisis have own stories to tell PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 28 October 2013 13:25

Fear and anguish brought about by gunfire, hostage taking, panic buying and uncontrolled violence demoralized Zamboanga City during the military-MNLF standoff. People’s freedom was redefined. Thus, making us as hostages in our own city.

As the crisis increased its forces, sleepless nights and doldrums mornings were part of lives of Zamboanguenos. Plus! —a stress or mindset of when the crisis end?

Despite the conflict, the city’s hope for peaceful resolution and people’s resiliency towards the assault, drummed up the many heroism acts in different forms and ways, advocating the message of strong foundation of hope despite of difficulties.

If there’s one remarkable entity in the middle of the siege, men in uniform have shown their dedication, their love of nation and their crucial service thinking less for themselves and more for others, made them the frontline of the Zamboanga  heroism’s list.

They have been in the frontline resolving the crisis, since the first assault of the MNLF Misuari faction. Their forces have been dispatched in different areas of concerns, all in the name of public service.

Soldiers and policemen from other parts of the Philippines were deployed to Zamboanga City at the height of the siege here. Discovery Zamboanga was given the chance to go around and have wonderful interaction with some group of men in uniform from the Regional Public Safety Battalion VI  (Western Visayas) namely, P01 Raymon Fille, P01 Bernard Diaz, P01 EdlynVillan and P01 John Rommel Serfino, most of them from Iloilo and Bacolod Cities.

Discovery Zamboanga, a group of local development communicators, saw how dedicated they are and as champions, agents of peace, security and order.  Their deployment in the city at the height of the siege brought several changes of perception of what Zamboanga City is. Like the image of the Muslims as an arrogant and self-centered people. changes it to a loving and warmth people, as they built a worth-to-remember friendship with the Jison family. Wherein this family is a Muslim by blood and by culture.

Froilyn Jison or Madam as what the group called her, as she saw the sleepless hours of these  cops, she offered simple means of awakening offertory like coffee. Starting this, on the service cops have their nocturnal getaway, if free time allowed them. Making the Jison house along with the family store known as “sidetrip” as their watering hole. Making their call of duty a smooth sailing.

These policemen from Visayas were amazed by our chabacano dialect as they said it sounded like a refreshing and globally- inspired language. They were able to learn some chabacano words like “quetal”, “buenas noches” and “cuidaw tu”.

Their stay in the city is truly a wonderful turning backs. From the life in the siege, having no financial support from their camp that will subsidize their food intake every day, the over a month of deployment and the adjustment move .Despite these difficulties, still they considered their journey in Zamboanga as a worth for keeps.

Having visited some of the city spots like the Fort Pilar shrine, City Hall and MindPro Mall, they are beckoned to come again to Zamboanga with no fear and doubts. And the most unforgettable anecdote of their stay in the city is meeting the Jison family which gave them the realization that “judgement justifies truth if you open your mind, heart and soul to something that your eyes have not yet opened.”  And when asked if given the chance to be deployed again in Zamboanga, will you grab the opportunity?  “Why not! Because, this city is a place of beautiful and wonderful people,” was the common reply of those visiting cops who came and helped defend Zamboanga City. — Gerald Belleza/Discovery Zamboanga