CCTV cameras installed around Lamitan City
LAMITAN CITY, Philippines—Authorities here have tapped tiny electronic eyes in a bid to combat terrorism and criminality, Mayor Roderick Furigay said.
Last month, two bombs exploded here. Both attacks, which occurred before the public security system was installed, were attributed to the Abu Sayyaf, a homegrown band of self-styled Islamists with links to Osama Bin Laden’s al-Qaida network.
Furigay said it did not matter if they invested millions of pesos so long as the safety and security of Lamiteños were assured against terrorist attacks, kidnappings and other forms of criminality.
“This is not just a security investment, it is also a business investment. If a place is secured, we are assured of investors coming in without this fear from lawless elements,” he said.
Furigay said that initially, the city government installed some P2.5 million worth of closed-circuit TV (CCTV) cameras in major thoroughfares here.
CCTV cameras were also installed in the seaport, market areas and in the main business areas, where banks and other commercial establishments and government offices are located.
“We are also planning to put up cameras in the exit and entry areas, this is a way of reducing [crimes],” Furigay said.
The CCTV cameras are wired to a nerve center manned by city government personnel.
Furigay said each of the monitoring stations can record up to 60 days of video.
“All the copies are being duplicated and maintenance is regular,” he said.
Senior Superintendent Alex Lenesis, Basilan police chief, praised the installation of CCTV cameras, saying it “is a big help to our personnel on the ground.”
Task Force Basilan commander Brigadier General Alexander Macario was more precise when he said that the CCTV cameras “have provided us an extra eye in our security operation.”
“It’s a technical advancement, an eye in the sky and could help preempt possible criminalities due to its psychological effect,” Macario said.
He said in the event of a crime occurring, authorities would now have a way to examine how it transpired by viewing the recorded video. “We could easily review the copy so we could possibly determine who the perpetrators are,” he said.
Macario said they were hoping that other areas of Basilan will follow the efforts of the Lamitan government.
Lenesis said he learned that Isabela City was contemplating on investing in CCTV facilities.
“From what I gathered, the mayor (Cherrylyn Akbar) is still trying to look for cheaper gadgets,” he said.
The latest tech news delivered to your inbox
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.