By ERWIN MASCARIÑAS
BUTUAN City — The city police office here has initiated an information campaign dubbed “Oplan Dikit” to help inform the public of the emergency police hotline numbers in the hopes of curbing street violence and crime here.
“This campaign is for public awareness because we believe that prevention is better than cure and with this. We are trying to say that the community is the first line of defense against crime. So, we arm them with the ability to communicate with us even before the crime or violence gets way out of hand,” said Butuan police director Senior Supt. Albert Magno.
Magno pointed out that amid the capabilities of the police, they are still not sufficient to quell criminality unless the community helps them.
“We cannot do it alone. We need the active participation of the community, and so with that, we are posting on the walls of different business establishments here in Butuan City. Whenever they see that a crime is about to be committed, they have the numbers of our police office, including that of the Special Weapons and Tactics unit,” said Magno.
The Butuan City Police Office said the ratio between a police officer to that of the people living in the city is about one for every 1,006. The entire force of the BCPO is estimated at about 531 police officers.
“Unfortunately, most of the people will immediately blame the police since they don’t know the real operation capacity of our force. We also hope that barangay officials will take an active role together with the barangay tanod to step up their efforts in helping us with our anti-crime campaign,” Magno said.
Magno said they are finalizing a meeting with all barangay officials to be able to sum up proper protocols and means of working together in curbing street crimes and violence.