BY ADRIAN P. NEMES III
Sixteen policemen of Bacolod City have been infected by the coronavirus disease 2019, as of yesterday, and this caused the lockdown of Police Station 4 in Brgy. Villamonte until further notice.
BCPO spokesperson, P/Lt. Liberty Indiape, said that, of the 16, one was about to leave the quarantine facility after full recuperation.
The PS4, meanwhile, will remain closed indefinitely after 14 policemen, including its station commander, P/Major Jun Ray Batadlan, tested positive for Covid following a swab test Friday, while other personnel, who yielded negative results, will stay at the police station, Indiape said.
She also said that augmentation personnel from the city Mobile Force Company and the BCPO headquarters were already sent to Police Station 4 to fill the vacuum left by the policemen who are currently quarantined.
Persons deprived of liberty, who are detained at the station, were also swabbed to check if they have been infected, too.
Indiape said surveillance testing at the BCPO headquarters continued yesterday and until today, while another testing is set next week.
Earlier, BCPO acting director, P/Col. Manuel Placido, said he is in favor of policemen undergoing swab tests for Covid because he said he believed that many have contracted the disease without knowing it. Placido said he wanted that all 700 police personnel undergo swab tests but if the test kits are limited, he will ask those who are on beat patrols and those who respond to crimes to be prioritized since they are most vulnerable to infection.*