New Year celebration in Zambo generally peaceful, injury free

ZAMBOANGA CITY (MindaNews / 3 Jan) – The Zamboanga City Police Office (ZCPO) has recorded zero cases both for stray bullet and firecracker-related incidents during the New Year celebration here.

Senior Supt. Angelito Casimiro, ZCPO director, also reported a 100-percent compliance to the Philippine National Police (PNP) headquarters’ directive dubbed as “Ligtas Kapaskuhan,” citing no one among his personnel has fired his gun during the New Year revelry.

“The New Year celebration was generally peaceful and injury free,” Casimiro said.

He attributed such achievement to the intensified enforcement of City Ordinance 431 that bans the sale and use of firecrackers and pyrotechnic products.

City Ordinance 431 was enacted on September 30, 2014 as an urgent measure in accordance with the provisions of Republic Act 7160 otherwise known as the Local Government Code of 1991.

However, Casimiro said they have apprehended 10 people, including seven minors, who were caught violating the firecracker ban ordinance.

He said the three arrested adults were subjected to inquest proceeding before the City Prosecutor’s Office while the minors were turned over to their respective parents.

He said they have confiscated firecrackers that include five star, rockets (kwitis, including the smaller version), piccolo, and sticks of seven colors.

Casimiro said they have also confiscated canons made of bamboo and tin cans also known as “lantaka,” and PVC canon known as “Boga.”

“There are still people who insist to violate the firecracker ban. Some of them were apprehended and spent their New Year’s Day inside the (Police) station jail except for the minors,” he added.

He led on Friday the inspection and removal of tapes on gun muzzles of firearms belonging to policemen under the ZCPO, which has jurisdiction over 11 police stations and a public safety company.

Casimiro said not one among the 1,222 policemen under the ZCPO was found to have fired his service firearms during the New Year’s revelry.

The PNP issued a directive to all personnel for an intensified campaign against illegal discharge of firearms and indiscriminate firing. The campaign includes the simultaneous taping of muzzles of guns issued to policemen nationwide last Dec. 22 to assure the public that they will not discharge their firearms during the Yuletide Season, except in cases of emergency.