PNP CHIEF SAYS HE IS HONORED TO HAVE SERVED IN APEC, PAPAL VISIT SECURITY FORCES

MANILA, Nov. 22 (PNA) — With the successful conclusion of the Asia-Pacific Economic Conference (APEC) Leaders’ Summit last week, Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Ricardo Marquez said this is the second time this year that he has successfully served to secure a high-profile event in the country.

“Not everyone gets the opportunity to serve the country twice in very special capacity,” he added.

Marquez was the PNP operations chief last Jan. 15 to 19 when Pope Francis made his first visit to the Philippines.

On the other hand, he is now the incumbent PNP chief during the APEC Leaders’ Summit which was held last Nov. 17 to 20.

Marquez said he finds securing the APEC meeting more challenging as it involves 21 leaders and representatives of economies whose visit and goals are being contested by some militant groups.

He noted that the Papal visit did not have this concern as majority of Filipinos had expressed joy upon learning that Pope Francis would be visiting the country late in 2014

“Some delegates even left notes saying that the Philippines’ hosting of APEC is the best while some vowed to return back to the country (for a more leisurely visit),” the PNP chief said.

With such reactions, it is hard not to feel appreciated, Marquez disclosed.

He attributed the success of the security plan to “intensive planning and intensive preparations.”

However, Marquez observed Metro Manila is too tight a place and another APEC-like event should be held in Clark Field, Pampanga which is much roomier and has hosting facilities.

Reacting to overkill reports made by some militant groups, the PNP chief quoted some netizens who said that “OA is much better than being sorry in the end.”

“Focus is not only on security but managing people on the ground,” the PNP chief said. Priam F. Nepomuceno & Christopher Lloyd T. Caliwan/PNA