October 08, 2006

LC eyes surveillance cams on city streets

IN A MOVE to prevent the further erosion of the peace and order situation in Laoag, city Mayor Michael V. Fariñas is planning to set-up surveillance cameras on the city’s main thoroughfares to serve as the city government’s ever-present eyes to monitor possible untoward incidents, especially those being committed at the dead of the night.

During the last regular staff meeting presided by the mayor, Dishnet Telecommunications representatives, led by engineer Francis Cornejo and assisted by Dr. Jeff Suangco, became the first proponent of the said surveillance equipment.

In the discussion, Cornejo said the surveillance camera they are offering would keep monitoring for at least 90 days. The said equipment can also zoom to at least 50 meters.

The said company’s initial proposal was a package of 16 units of camera with a price of P1.5 million.

According to Fariñas, should the plan push through, the said surveillance equipments would be set up in the entry and exit points of the city as well as in Laoag’s major thoroughfares.

Another purpose of the said project would be to hook the said cameras to the Internet where those who are interested may view the city in real time.

The Ilocos Times learned that several cities in Metro Manila had already been using this kind of surveillance equipment as well as Vigan City in Ilocos Sur.

Fariñas however clarified that the city government would not immediately purchase the said equipments from Dishnet Telecom as he stressed that the local government would still go through the process of bidding.

He then invited other prospective proponents for the said equipments.

The funding for the planned project, Fariñas said, would be sourced from the 2007 budget of the city government, noting that there would be an increase in the internal revenue allotment (IRA) share of the city.

The expected increase in IRA share for Laoag is an approximate P16 million from the supplemental national budget.

Dominic B. dela Cruz

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