The Negros Oriental Joint Task Force has been created to beef up peace and security to maintain the well-being of Negrenses and ensure economic development.
The task force is expected to strengthen coordination and collaboration of efforts among the more than 20 national and local government agency-members in the conduct of joint security operations.
In a workshop, Governor Roel Degamo urged the participants to intensify peace and order efforts to minimize if not eliminate all forms of criminalities and illegal activities in the province.
Degamo, however, recognized the contributions made by government agencies in strengthening the province’ disaster risk reduction and management programs.
He noted that with the concerted efforts among stakeholders, the province has been declared as “conflict manageable and development ready” last year by Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin.
Army commander, Col. Allan Martin of the 302 nd IB, and Senior Supt. Dionardo Carlos of the Negros Oriental Police Provincial Office said the joint task force needs the participation and support of the communities and local government units to make the duties and responsibilities well-organized.
The task force’s scope of operations include maritime safety and security, criminality, illegal drugs, insurgency, smuggling, tourism, environmental protection, disaster response, and land transportation and traffic.
The initiative came to be realized when reports have it that Abu Sayyaf Group members are coming to Dumaguete City from Dapitan, and when a ship loaded with smuggled rice was intercepted in Zamboanguita town.
The task force intends to prevent illegal activities and apprehend lawless elements.
Degamo said the province has recorded a low crime rate among areas in Central Visayas, and he asked workshop participants to maintain and sustain peace and order in Negros Oriental.*JFP