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Calabarzon police official clarifies CMP not ‘Alsa Masa’

Chief Supt. Edward E. Carranza, director of the Police Regional Office (PRO4A) in Calabarzon, clarified on Tuesday afternoon that the Community Mobilization Project (CMP) initiative is an anti-crime program wherein citizens are allowed to be more involved in eliminating drugs and crime at the barangay level.

Carranza called a press conference to debunk speculations by some quarters that the CMP is similar to the “Alsa Masa” concept, and stressed it will neither be a vigilante nor an armed group.

“Alsa Masa” was established as a vigilante group in 1984 to combat the communist insurgency in Davao City. It’s the concept of creating a culture of social responsibility is what CMP is all about,” the regional police director clarified.

“The community is empowered to help law enforcers in maintaining peace and order; however, empowerment does not mean arming them with firearms, but with knowledge and trainings necessary in promoting public safety,” he said.

He assured the public that the entire Calabarzon police force will not repeat the abuses of the “Alsa Masa” during the 1980s.

“Non-violence will always prevail in Community Mobilization Project. Members of CMP will not be armed,” he said.

He explained that the CMP initiative, which was launched in Sta. Rosa City about a year ago, is similar to a neighborhood crime watch among households and villagers by helping the police gather information and conduct necessary interventions to address peace.

Carranza defended that the police mandate is to maintain peace and order and this has always been a shared responsibility between the people and the police.

He said the CMP is one of the existing programs of the Police Regional Office Calabarzon to combat the menace of crime and illegal drugs within the locality.

“People’s vigilance” and “trust in the police” are the needed components in maintaining peace and order. Majority, if not all, of the people in the community know the real situation in their area, even lawless elements and lawless activities for that matter,” he said.

He further said that the people in the villages and communities are the best source of accurate information and if this information remains unreported, then the illegal activities proliferate and criminals thrive.

The CMP is an enabling strategy among the village household clusters, which have faith in their police and encourages them to report suspicious incidents and untoward occurrences that will result in police operations that neutralize criminals and curb lawless activities. (Robert Maico/PNA)