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NCRPO: No Christmas break in drug war
There will be no break in the government’s war on drugs even during the Christmas holidays, the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) said yesterday.
Police will not stop conducting Oplan Tokhang and drug raids in Metro Manila, NCRPO director Chief Superintendent Oscar Albayalde told The STAR.
Albayalde warned drug suspects that policemen would not hesitate to kill them during legitimate anti-narcotics operations once they resist arrest.
“We will carry out anti-drug operations on Christmas Day but we assure the public that these will not be bloody unless drug suspects fight back and try to harm the operatives,” he said.
Albayalde said police officers would continue serving warrants for the arrest of suspected drug pushers and users.
The NCRPO chief advised homeowners to exercise their rights and refuse entry to policemen implementing Oplan Tokhang without a search warrant.
Tokhang or “knock and plead” anti-drug operation is a tactic adopted by police from President Duterte’s hometown in Davao City, where he was mayor for more than two decades.
It involves police officers knocking on the doors of suspected drug pushers and users to ask them to surrender and end their ways.
The Philippine National Police has visited the homes of 4,091,542 drug suspects since the Duterte government launched the crackdown on illegal drugs in June.
Albayalde ordered the anti-drug personnel of the five police districts in Metro Manila to be on alert against suspected drug peddlers who might take advantage of the holidays.
“Each police district has pending case operation plans scheduled on Christmas Day,” he said.
Cops on full alert
Meanwhile, Albayalde said the NCRPO has been placed on full alert status for the Christmas and New Year celebrations.
He said police assistance desks would be set up in malls, bus terminals and ports in anticipation of the surge in passengers going to the provinces.
The NCRPO said policemen deployed in Divisoria and Tutuban areas would be augmented by
personnel from the Regional Public Safety Battalion, Armed Forces of the Philippines as well as Special Weapons and Tactics teams.
Albayalde urged the people to be vigilant and report to authorities suspicious individuals and packages abandoned in public places.