Security measures for the Britney Spears concert next week will be stricter than what was originally planned, Quezon City Rep. Winston Castelo, chairman of the House Committee on Metro Manila Development, said yesterday.
Pasay City Rep. Emi Calixto Rubiano backed the holding of the American pop star’s concert on June 15 at the Mall of Asia Arena, which falls under her jurisdiction.
Castelo revealed that two days before the Resorts World Manila attack Friday, the Philippine National Police put in place a security plan that would prevent another terrorist attack just like what happened to the Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England last May 22.
“Gen. (Oscar) Albayalde will institute strict security measures to ensure the safety of everyone,” said Castelo. The senior administration lawmaker continued: “The Britney Spears concert should continue. There is no confirmed intelligence and external threat that would warrant its postponement.”
Albayalde, head of the National Capital Region Police Office, appeared during a hearing of the Metro Manila panel where he briefed lawmakers of the police assessment of the security condition in the metropolis.
“He appealed to the local government unit concerned and the concert organizers to coordinate with him in advance to layout plans to protect concert goers from harm” Castelo said.
Castelo and Calixto-Rubiano aired confidence that the security arrangements at the Spears concert will even be more stringent than what was previously planned by organizers and police authorities.
“I appeal to the public to fully cooperate and understand that we cannot allow violence and terrorism to win,” said Calixto-Rubiano.
Laguna Rep. Arlene Arcillas, who covers one of the fastest advancing urban areas in the country, said the planned concert should be staged.
“We don’t want any of these acts of violence, be it terrorism or not, stop what we should be doing. We have to show that it is still safe here, otherwise, the economy and tourism in this country will suffer,” said Arcillas.
(Ben R. Rosario)