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Cops 'barricade' parts of Commonwealth Avenue for SONA

Police barricaded early Monday some parts of Commonwealth Avenue in Quezon City hours ahead of President Benigno Aquino III's second State of the Nation Address before a joint session of Congress. As early as 3 a.m., police started positioning personnel and placing barriers near areas where groups were to hold rallies, radio dzBB's Rodil Vega reported. Several police reinforcements from Ilocos, Cagayan Valley, Central and Southern Luzon and the Bicol Region were also placed on standby, the report added. Likewise on standby were personnel from the Armed Forces of the Philippines' National Capital Region Command. Firefighters as well as anti-riot cops were positioned near the San Mateo Road, the report added. The police also started enforcing a traffic rerouting plan along Commonwealth Avenue at 5 a.m., closing part of the northbound part and letting affected vehicles take part of the southbound part.
CCTV cameras Closed-circuit television cameras were placed at the footbridge near the St. Peter Church, where many anti-administration groups are expected to gather. As early as 5 a.m., anti-riot police forces were already positioned, radio dzBB's Allan Gatus reported. Steel railings and concrete barriers were placed at the St. Peter Church area by that time, the report added. For their part, militant groups started their marches in Quezon City as early as 6 a.m. Radio dzBB's Allan Gatus reported members of the Kilusang Mambubukid ng Pilipinas marched towards the Department of Agriculture and then to the Quezon Memorial Circle. House, Senate security Meanwhile security was tightened both at the House of Representatives in Quezon City and at the Senate in Pasay City. Presidential guards, Quezon City police and city traffic enforcers were at their posts even before 5 a.m. Monday, radio dzBB's Rowena Salvacion reproted. The Presidential Security Group had been supervising security at the Batasan Complex since Saturday. Aquino will be delivering his second SONA at the House of Representatives inside the Batasan Complex. For their part, police and traffic aides strictly enforced a "No SONA ID, No Entry" policy to all visitors at the Batasan Complex. At the Senate in Pasay City, police maintained checkpoints near the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) building to screen vehicles entering the Senate compound. Orange jeeps plying routes in the Cultural Center of the Philippines complex were not allowed to get near the Senate gate. Senate security and police personnel at the Senate also asked visitors for ID cards. The Senate was to open its session at 10 a.m. before senators are scheduled to go to the Batasan Complex in the afternoon to attend the SONA. — RSJ, GMA News
Tags: sona, sona2011