Friday, January 22, 2016

Cops ask city support on
Anti-loud-mufflers drive

TAGBILARAN CITY, January 21 (PIA)—Feeling helpless in his lonely fight against motorcycles fitted with loud mufflers stirring residents especially at night, Police Chief George Vale asks City legislative support as well a logistics to permanently put up a solution to erring motorists. 

City Police Chief, Colonel George Vale wants cops to be empowered by an ordinance to take out illegal mufflers from accosted motorcycles so they can destroy them. 

At the joint City Peace and Order Council (CPOC) and Disaster and Risk Reduction Management Councils (CDRRMC), PSupt. Vale revealed that no matter how they conduct saturation drives against erring motorists who install loud mufflers, they can’t hold the owners who pay for the city ordinance mandated penalties.

Earlier, a barangay chairman in Tagbilaran pleaded for the police to do something against motorcycles with altered mufflers producing disturbing sounds at night. 

”We flag them, impound but yet motorists only pay the penalties, and we could not hold them,” he shared, during the meeting presided by Vice Mayor Jose Antonio Veloso and Administrator Leonides Borja. 

City Mayor John Geesnal Yap was on to another pressing concern at that time so he delegated the authority to preside on the joint meeting to Veloso. 

“We planned saturation drives with Camp Dagohoy, but there are stores that sell them,” he added feeling helpless. 

Over this, a former Capitol’s legislative researcher disclosed that there is already a provincial ordinance that bans shops from displaying, selling and installing illegal motorcycle fixtures.

Ric Obedencio, now a managing editor of a local paper revealed that the ordinance, which he could not accurately give the number, has been passed sponsored by then Board Member Alfonso Damalerio III. 

“They could probably use the provincial ordinance to implement the illegal motorcycle fixtures,” he volunteered the information, considering that the ordinance also penalizes shops and repairmen who install the already considered illegal motorcycle alterations.

Besides, it they would use the provincial ordinance, police could already accost motorists from outside the city whose motorcycles feature illegal alterations. 

Aside from oversized mufflers, Obedencio also complained on installing colored or white bake-lights, confusing blinkers and signal lights as well as High Intensity Discharge lamps that are dangerously too bright for incoming drivers. 

“Who said they could install blue, green or white lights as brake lights when the international standard is red or amber?” he asked. 

More than this, Colonel Vale asked the city legislators to draft an ordinance allowing the police to take off the illegal fixtures to motorcycles and destroy them, rather than just release the vehicle to the owners. 

He also pushed for additional motorcycles for the cops mobility and pursuit operations. 

The City Vice Mayor Jose Antonio Veloso has still to comment on the police suggestion. (rac/PIA-7/Bohol)

Task force, not COMELEC 
Designates EWAs in Bohol

TAGBILARAN CITY, January 21 (PIA) — The declaration of seven election watch-list areas (EWA) in Bohol is based on the joint task force’s election monitoring during the previous elections, clarifies Bohol Commission on Elections (COMELEC) supervisor Atty. Eliseo Labaria. 

The joint task force, composite of the Philippine national Police, Armed Forces of the Philippines, the COMELEC and other support groups have been compiling incidents: politically motivated or election related incidents from last elections, explains joint task force members recently. 

This also means that the joint task force may have to agree again if there has been a change in the situation since last elections, police members of the election task force said.

Earlier, the COMELEC identified the seven EWAs in Bohol as Buenavista, Clarin, Cortes, Danao, Inabanga, Pilar and Ubay.

These towns have been in the EWAS either due to politically motivated violence or election related incidents in the past.

According to police sources, politically motivated incidents are those that happen prior to the election period while election related incidents happen within the election period. 

The EWAs have been raised for history of intense partisan political rivalry, election related or politically motivated incidents, and private army groups of influential politicians. 

Newspaper reports that Cortes mayor and former police ranking officer who used to be the budget officer of the past mayor, complained about Cortes inclusion into the EWA list. 

But COMELEC insists it was a collegial decision of the team to put the towns under EWAs based on the above histories.

On the other hand, Atty Eliseo Labaria added that the team would now be sitting again to evaluate how the situation in these EWA areas have changed in the past months.

As the election period started January 10, the task force is also expected to issue another round of election watch areas: take off or maybe add some more towns in the list. (rac/PIA-7/Bohol)

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