2,000 cops, soldiers, others to secure MassKara Festival

Members of the security task force for MassKara Festival convene at the Bacolod City Police Office (BCPO) headquarters Monday. (Glazyl Y. Masculino Photo)

By: Glazyl Y. Masculino

BACOLOD City – The Bacolod City Police Office (BCPO) will deploy 2,000 policemen, soldiers, and force multipliers to provide security for the celebration of the 40th MassKara Festival here on October 8 – 27.

This was discussed by the security task force for the MassKara festival during their conference at the BCPO headquarters last Monday.

Police Major Lester Leada, BCPO operations branch head, said the initial deployment also include augmentation forces from the Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office (Nocppo), Maritime, Philippine Coast Guard, Special Action Force, and other support units of the Philippine National Police (PNP).

Leada said the initial deployment is their reference to request additional reinforcement from Police Regional Office (PRO) – 6 in Iloilo City.

The security plan includes the possible arrival of President Rodrigo Duterte, who’s been gracing the festival for three consecutive years already.

Leada said they did not make any major revision on the existing security plan but they will improve their security measures especially in festival sites, where influx of people is expected.

The crowd during the festivity last year reached more than two million, based on the record from the City Tourism Office, Leada said.

They are also intensifying their security measures to prevent possible terrorism, following the bombing incident in Sultan Kudarat last week.

Aside from crime prevention measures, the BCPO is also strengthening their security in all entry and exit points to prevent the entry of contraband such as illegal drugs during the said festival.