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Police, Comelec, religious groups hold ecumenical liturgy, bike for SAFE

CAMP BGEN OSCAR M FLORENDO – Several convenors took part in two  activities for peace which were held in separate venues in La Union in support of the drive to ensure secure and fair elections (SAFE 2013) this May.

Representatives of various Christian religious organizations led by TIGNAY- PPCRV (Ti Gimong Nga Aggunay, Gimong Nga Agbantay), Parish Pastoral Council for Responsible Voting (PPCRV), Peace Builders of La Union, Pastors’ Fellowship, Catholic Charismatic Groups, and other groups such as the La Union Conference on Human Rights, Kanlungan, Amnesty International, students, COMELEC officials and the police participated in the ecumenical liturgy for peace on Jan 26 at Don Mariano Marcos Memorial State University-Mid La Union Campus (DMMMSU- MLUC) and the bike for peace which was held the following day at DMMMSU-South La Union in Agoo town.

Police Chief Superintendent Ricardo C. Marquez, Police Regional Office 1 director, emphasized the significance of the support coming from the different religious and civil society groups.

“We are a government of laws, and not of men and we have our laws written on paper for all to see and abide by thus, they cannot be changed, redefined, or looked at differently by any man at his whim, that is why, clearly, the law’s intention is to defeat political killings, and any other acts of lawless violence and obstructions of the right to suffrage.” the regional director added.

PSSupt Reynaldo G. Biay, Regional Special Operations Task Group (RSOTG) Commander of La Union and PSSupt Ramon L. Rafael, La Union provincial director, organized and graced the bike for peace activity dubbed Crusade For Peace: Bisikleta Para sa Kapayapaan.

Composed of 205 bikers from the Fun Cycle Club of San Fernando City, La Union, and joined by members of PNP La Union, students, NGOs, local government employees, Barangay Peacekeeping Action Teams (BPATS), private and religious sectors and the local community, the bike for peace serves as an awareness campaign to support the various initiatives of the police in Ilocos Region and promote participation of the people in reporting any presence of suspicious lawless elements and untoward incidents in their locality.

“Kami po sa kapulisan ay lubos na naniniwalang hindi namin makakayang maipatupad ang batas kung wala ang suporta mismo ng mga mamamayan dahil kailangan po natin ng matatag na ugnayan ng mamamayan at kapulisan tungo sa mapayapa at ligtas na pamayanan.” Biay stressed.

As early as November last year, PRO1 in partnership with other stakeholders had set off several activities to prevent the occurrence of election related violent incidents in the region.#