ORMOC CITY was named the safest city in the country based on research conducted by the Philippine National Police (PNP) Crime Research and Analysis Center for the first quarter of 2018, it was learned from a news report of UNTV New and Rescue.
According to the report, Ormoc City recorded only 134 crime incidents for the first quarter, followed by Cotabato City in Maguindanao, and Puerto Princesa City in Palawan with 220 and 227, respectively.
PSSupt. Noel Sandoval, Chief of the PNP’s Crime Research and Analysis Center is UNTV’s source. They quoted him as saying he believes one factor that contributes to the low crime rate in the said areas is the active involvement of police and residents within the community.
“Nare-record kase nag-report sa pulis. Pero kung hindi sila nagpunta sa pulis, hindi sila marerecord,” Sandoval said. (They report [crimes] to the police that’s why it gets recorded. If they don’t go to the police, there would be no record of the crime.)
The news, which came as a pleasant surprise to Mayor Richard Gomez, Vice Mayor Toto Locsin Jr. and members of the Ormoc Development Team (ODT), elated the city officials. Mayor Gomez said he was happy with the news, saying that “it means we are doing something right.
However, he added, that the accolade or achievement was achieved with the “cooperation of the police, the army and the community.”
Sr. Supt. Ramil Ramirez, on the other hand, said he was also surprised with the news. “May nagsabi lang sa akin about sa news,” he said, adding that he is happy that the efforts of the Ormoc police has been recognized.
He added they could not have done it without the cooperation of the people and importantly, without the support of the local government unit. He said “hindi matatawaran ang suportang ibinibigay ni Mayor Gomez, nila Vice Mayor at ng mga opisyales ng Ormoc, kaya kaming mga police, inspired magtrabaho.”
Ramirez also called on Ormocanons to continue cooperating with the police, to trust in their capabilities to solve crimes and maintain peace and order. “Disiplina lang po,” he said, “dahil kun may disiplina ang lahat ng tao, walang gulo.”
He also urged them to report crimes, no matter how small, so that they can immediately solve it.
Mayor Gomez, in addition, said the achievement vindicates all the support his administration has given the police which includes ample gasoline allowance for the PNP patrol vehicles, allowances for the men and women in uniform, and even functional firearms for them. “Lahat ng confidential funds natin, we spend on our peace and order programs,” the mayor said. He added that this year, the City will be upgrading the PNP’s firearms and fund the training of a Special Weapons Action Team (SWAT).
Ormoc, before Mayor Richard Gomez became mayor, was known as the “drug capital of Eastern Visayas.” Now, it is the safest city in the country.