Gov’t ramps up security measures for SONA 2022  

<p><em>(File photo)</em></p>

(File photo)

MANILA – The government is beefing up its security measures to ensure that the first State of the Nation Address (SONA) of President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. on July 25 will be peaceful and orderly.

Authorities increased the number of state forces and force multipliers to secure Marcos’ SONA from 15,000 to over 21,800.

They will guard the Batasang Pambansa in Quezon City and at least 30 border control points along the metro for the event, applying the same template utilized during the inauguration of Marcos in Manila on June 30.

Of these, 16,964 officers will come from the National Capital Region Police Office; 1,905 from police support units; and 2,974 from other agencies and volunteer groups.

They will be equipped with motorcycles, mobile cars, drones, ambulances, fire trucks, and body-worn cameras.

The police are ready to block and disperse groups who will stage protests in prohibited areas and those who will endanger public safety and disrupt activities.

Protesters are only allowed in designated freedom parks like the Quezon City Memorial Circle. They may gather in some areas provided they secure permits from the Quezon City local government unit and adhere to guidelines of a peaceful assembly.

The Quezon City Police District and the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) will conduct clearing operations along Commonwealth Avenue, the main thoroughfare leading to the SONA venue.

The government is encouraging Quezon City residents to cooperate with the initiative.

The MMDA will also announce road rerouting plans so vehicles of SONA attendees can freely utilize portions of Commonwealth Avenue.

Metro Manila residents are prohibited to use firearms outside their homes from July 22 to 27 as part of security measures for the President’s SONA. (PR/OPS-Special Concerns)