DAVAO CITY (MindaNews / 27 April) — Organizers of the 62nd Palarong Pambansa (National Games) assured delegates from the country’s 17 regions of their security during the week-long multi-sport event, which will open on Sunday at the 20-hectare Davao City-University of the Philippines Sports Complex in the UP-Mindanao campus in Tugbok District.
“Security is in its highest level to ensure a very safe activity for all,” Jenielito Atillo, spokesperson of the Department of Education (DepEd) 11 said on Saturday.
Event organizers, he said, prepared an opening “full of wonderful surprises as the program is designed to showcase the Dabawenyo hospitality, culture and warmth.”
Col. Alexander Tagum, chief of the Davao City Police Office (DCPO) said the security cluster, after undertaking a series of coordinating conferences and deployment of security forces, is committed to ensure the safety delegates during their stay in the city, to reduce fear among the visitors, and to prevent the incidence of crime.
The Palarong Pambansa, an annual multi-sport event involving student-athletes from 17 regions of the Philippines, will bring around 20,000 visitors to Davao City.
The city’s hosting of the Palaro, the country’s biggest local sporting event, is the second since 1950 or 69 years ago.
In 2015, the neighboring city of Tagum in Davao del Norte hosted the 58th edition of the national games.
But even with tight security, Tagum reminded the participants to be mindful of their surroundings and to report suspicious individuals.
“There are many things each and every community member can do to reduce his or her chances of becoming a victim or prevent the incidence of crime from happening by reporting suspicious persons around them and to observe situational awareness wherever they maybe in the City,” he said.
The opening ceremony was earlier scheduled on April 27 but was reset to April 28 as the President was scheduled to return from China on the 27th. (Antonio L. Colina IV / MindaNews)