67 police officers in Pangasinan receive merit medals for SAFE 2016

LINGAYEN, Pangasinan — At least 67 personnel of the Pangasinan Provincial Police Office (PPPO) led by Senior Supt. Edgar Allan Okubo, officer-in-charge, received the Medalya ng Kasanayan (Merit Medal) for their great contributions to the success of the Secured and Safe Elections (SAFE) 2016 that made Pangasinan one of the most peaceful provinces in the country during the May 9 elections.

The medals were awarded individually by Chief Supt. Ericson Velasquez, police regional director 1, to Okubo, company commanders of the two Provincial Public Safety Companies (PPSC), chiefs of police in 48 towns and cities of Pangasinan, and chiefs of different police support units.

The awarding of medals took place after the traditional Monday flag raising ceremony and program at the Pangasinan PPO Grandstand and Parade Ground where Velasquez was the guest of honor and speaker.

In his speech before the awarding of medals, Velasquez said, “I feel proud and honored serving with fine gentlemen in the moment that will shape the history of our country in the next few years. Our people have spoken, election is over. And for us in the PNP. we have done our share as we were able to conduct a safe secure and perhaps the fairest election in the history of our country.”

He thanked all the men and women in uniform, civilian employees of the police, the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, Bureau of Fire Protection, barangay officials and their tanods who all rallied behind the PNP in implementing a SAFE 2016.

This could not have happened, he said, without the faithful service and dedication and sacrifices of men and women in uniform and also the civilian employees, the men of the streets, in the office, and the men who led the personnel in the uniform service.

He said Police Region 1 which covers Pangasinan, La Union, Ilocos Sur and Ilocos Norte did not record any single violent incident and attributed this to the support of the men and women in uniform as well as their partners in the uniform service and the civilian population.

He said though the election is over, the job of the police will never end as there might be some election-related incidents that might yet occur which need continuous vigilance.

“Let us not rest on our laurels, let us continue to work hard and let us always give the best of what we can give in service to our country and our people”, he said.

Meanwhile, Senior Supt. Okubo said that of the more than 700 policemen who formed part of the augmentation forces that secured Pangasinan during the election, 20 percent are proud son and daughters of Cordillera.

That was why, a canao thanksgiving feast, spiced up by a ritual dance by seven officers from different police units was held at the PNP Provincial Headquarters that coincided the giving of medals to the PNP Officers.

Okubo said that during the election they deployed 29 quick reaction teams composed of AFP and PPSC personnel that were prepared to thwart any eventuality that may arise coming from either political supporters, partisan armed groups and criminal elements who may tend to disrupt the election.

Several teams called “Task Force Bulabog” were also formed to disrupt alleged vote-buying and selling by some candidates and their supporters, PNA/northboundasia.com