One-hundred eighty-nine officers from the Police Regional Office XI were deployed as part of the Revitalized Pulis Sa Barangay (RPSB), during the send-off ceremony in the Bagani Hall in Camp Quintin Merecido.
In his welcome remarks, Col. Edgar Alan Okubo, the deputy regional director for Operation (DRDO), said the Pulis sa Barangay will serve and assist barangay officials in recording crimes, maintenance of peace and order, and prevention of crimes.
Brig. Gen. Filmore Escobal, director of PRO XI, directed the revitalization of Pulis sa Barangay, which started in 2011 to support the Executive Order 70 or the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict.
“It was then revitalized and trained, which is to engage the people in the barangays, protect them, help in the recovery efforts from the enemy, and ensure that the basic government services will continue to exist in the said barangays,” Okubo said.
He said they will be deployed to the different barangays in the region to ensure the success of the government’s anti-insurgency campaign.
The police officers underwent a three-week training, which started last Jan. 16, 2020 and culminated on Feb. 5.
The first batch is part of the 600 personnel that will be deployed in the PRO XI areas in the coming months. The second batch will start training next month to cover the remaining barangays as replacement until June 2022.
Most of them are police non-commissioned officers who will be under the direct supervision of a ranked officer.
“The RPSBs cadres will be deployed to the Community Support Program (CSP) cleared barangays and will support them in validating issues to receive the convergence of support if needed,” Okubo said.
“They will immerse in barangay until they will be replaced by a new batch to continue their mission,” he added.
Also in his message, Ednar Dayanghirang, the chief of staff of the provincial government of Davao Oriental, said the RPSB cadres shall prioritize the community, indigenous people (IP), the white area (progressive group), and former rebels.
Dayanghirang also urged the RPSB cadres to support the indigenous political structure so that they would not be deceived and recruited to the armed group.
In an interview yesterday at the sidelines of the activity, Maj. Eudisan Gultiano, the spokesperson of PRO XI, said the RPSBs will be now sustained with the help of the local government units, unlike before.
“They are focused on the insurgency and reintegration of the former rebels, as helped in the EO 70 that will reach out to the communities who were prone to recruitment of the NPA’s,” Gultiano said.
She said the RPSB cadres will be deployed to areas previously cleared from insurgency by the military.
Meanwhile, Capt. Rosario Aguilar, the spokesperson of Davao City Police Office (DCPO), told reporters yesterday during the AFP-PNP press briefing held at The Royal Mandaya Hotel, that 28 PNP personnel, including eight officers of the RPSB from the DCPO are ready to be deployed to the seven priority barangays in the city.
Aguilar said the seven barangays are all in the third district. They are Tibuloy, Sibulan and Catigan in Toril; Barangay Tambobong in Baguio District; and Malamba, Salaysay and Tamugan in Marilog district.
“They will be deployed to those areas we are considering far-flung,” she added. “These are the recommended barangays of the Peace 911.”