No letup in drive vs petty crimes

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ILOILO City – “Crimes, big or small, are crimes. They must be reported to the police. I urge complainants or victims to file charges against the suspects to stop their illegal activities,” declared Chief Supt. Agrimero Cruz Jr., director of the Police Regional Office 6 (PRO-6).

He ordered police units to utilize all available personnel in the field to deter petty criminals such as snatchers and pickpockets.

Cruz issued the order following a Social Weather Stations survey showing that 31 percent of Filipinos opt not to report petty crimes.

He himself observed one concern of the police when petty crime suspects are arrested – victims are mostly hesitant to file charges after their stolen valuables have been recovered.

“Filing charges against the suspects will somehow help reduce petty crimes. Dapat ma-file ang kaso para hindi sila agad makalabas (Charges should be filed so they would be able to leave jail),” Cruz added.

He also again reminded policemen to arrest wanted persons with pending cases such for qualified theft, theft and robbery.

Meanwhile, the chief of the Iloilo City Police Office’s Intelligence Section, Chief Insp. Dande Deocampo, said he had directed his intelligence personnel to conduct non-stop operation against snatchers, pickpockets and robbers operating in Iloilo City.

He also urged the riding public to be aware of the movements of other jeepney passengers as some of them could be petty criminals.

“Do not give them the opportunity to strike. If we are aware of the people around us, we will not be victimized,” Deocampo said./PN

War vets gird for Victory Day celeb

ILOILO – World War II veterans here are preparing for the 68th anniversary of Victory (Liberation) Day of Panay and Romblon on March 18.

March 18 of every year has been declared a non-working special holiday in the islands of Panay and Romblon, including the cities of Iloilo and Roxas.

Ilonggo soldiers teamed up with the Allied Forces during World War II to liberate Panay and Romblon islands from the Japanese Imperial Army on March 18, 1945.

The veterans and their kin traditionally hold the anniversary at the Balantang Memorial Cemetery and National Shrine in Jaro, Iloilo City.

In 1989, President Corazon Aquino issued Proclamation No. 430 or “An Act Declaring March 18 of every year as Victory Day in the Islands of Panay and Romblon including the cities of Iloilo and Roxas.”

Citing the heroic deeds of Ilonggo soldiers during World War II, Gov. Arthur Defensor Sr. has given financial assistance of P200,000 for the holding of the anniversary.

The financial assistance was given to the Sixth Military District World War II Veterans Association, Inc. which is preparing for activities to mark the occasion.

Defensor noted that the Liberation of Panay, Guimaras and Romblon was an important chapter in Philippine history.

“I salute the patriotism and gallantry of Filipino soldiers,” he said.

Their act of courage should always be well remembered as they have changed the course of the country’s history, Defensor added.

To note, a Panay Liberation Marker was also built in Tigbauan, Iloilo to memorialize the 1945 event. (ECGarcia, Capitol News/PN