Only the Philippine National Police-Highway Patrol Group (PNP-HPG) may inspect cargo vehicles at dedicated control points (DCPs), according to PNP Joint Task Force Corona Virus Shield (JTF CV Shield) commander Police Lt. Gen. Guillermo Eleazar.
DCPs will be set up on provincial boundaries and other strategic areas where cargo vehicles usually pass or at existing quarantine control points.
“Cargo vehicles will only be inspected at HPG-manned and HPG-supervised dedicated control points, and inspection will only be done if necessary. These cargo vehicles must not be flagged down or inspected at the QCPs,” Eleazar pointed out.
“The objective here is to ensure that deliveries of food and other basic goods are not subjected to unnecessary and redundant inspections which are the usual reason of the delay,” Eleazar said in a statement.
JTF CV Shield is the enforcement arm of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) and is composed of PNP, Armed Forces of the Philippines, Philippine Coast Guard, and Bureau of Fire Protection.
Truckers and delivery companies/service providers have been calling out the government, especially during the first few days of implementation of the enhanced community quarantine, about being stopped at checkpoints despite an IATF policy of unhampered movement of all types of cargoes during the quarantine period.
He said Gamboa has instructed all leaders of the HPG teams that will man the DCPs to coordinate with local commanders, especially with the provincial directors, to establish clear guidelines.
Coordination with the National Capital Region Police Office was also ordered for all cargo vehicles entering or passing Metro Manila.
“We understand that HPG units have limited personnel, [which] is why our Chief PNP said that the HPG team leaders can also request for augmentation from local police units in manning the Dedicated Control Points,” Eleazar said.
He added that DCPs will also be set up in the Visayas and Mindanao as soon as possible.
For problems relating to the movement of cargoes, drivers and owners of cargo vehicles can call the HPG hotline at 0926-2255474.
“We activated this hotline specifically for the concerns and for any complaints of drivers and owners of cargo vehicles. We assure them that we will immediately address any of their concerns relating to cargo transport,” Eleazar said.
Photo courtesy of PNP