The Metro Boracay Task Force (MBTF) and other law enforcement agencies conducted a capability demonstration exercise on Thursday in preparation for the reopening of Boracay.
Director-General Oscar Albayalde, chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP) said the activity is to “showcase a completely overhauled security system and peace and order program” of the island’s security forces.
The group, according to Albayalde will address the perennial issues and concerns that were experienced during the previous tourism operations prior to Boracay closure.
The simulation exercise demonstrated the capability of the MBTF to respond to various threats, such as drowning incident, kidnapping scenario, bomb attack, hostage taking, fire, and search and rescue operation held at the Station 1 of the White Beach.
For the island’s reopening, Albayalde said more than 400 police personnel will be permanently deployed in Boracay.
He said an increase in the number of police officers here from 200 is part of the restructuring of the police force in Malay.
Five substations was also established in different areas in Boracay and in Caticlan to ensure the safety of island residents and tourists.
Two brand new vehicles will also be turned over to Boracay police, he added.
Meanwhile, Chief Superintendent John Bulalacao, director of Police Regional Office-Western Visayas said the police is now preparing for a possible increase of crime incidence with the influx of tourists.
“With the reopening of the island, we will be expecting more human activities,” he said.
He said they also aim for a zero major incident during the island’s reopening.
He said that as a tourist area, the task force is also preparing for possible incidents involving terrorism in Boracay.
The more than 1-hour capability demonstration exercise was joined by members of the MBTF including the Philippine National Police, Philippine Army, Philippine Coast Guard, Philippine Navy, Bureau of Fire Protection, Malay Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office, Boracay Fire Rescue and Volunteer (BFRAV), as well as other volunteer groups in the island.