For others, August 23, 2010 was just an ordinary day, but in Manila Phlippines, the day ended with a bloody finish. Lives were lost as former police held a group of Hongkong tourists hostage. We understand lives were lost and we would like to extend our condolences to the families of the eight tourists who died in this tragic hostage-taking incident.
They say let’s learn from other people’s mistakes so we don’t have to experience those ourselves. In line with the hostage-taking that happened in Manila, there are so many lessons we can learn from the said incident.
To all the tourists and those who are still planning to visit other countries, it is advised to never trust a stranger, especially when this stranger is armed with high-caliber pistols. Yes, it is possible that the passengers trusted this ex-police because he was wearing his uniform. Nevertheless, it is still not recommended to allow him to hitch a ride with you.
With all these lessons, the police unit needs a major role here. Tragic as it may be, we seriously hope that would be the last hostage-taking in the Philippines or anywhere in the world. Let’s us all pray for world peace and pray for those people who are having serious problems. May they be able to surpass whatever those challenges, hope that evil works such as this will not even enter their minds.
During a hostage situation police officials should assign a crowd control unit. If so this should be strictly implemented. During the hostage-taking, the people watching had interferred in the actions of the assault team. They were not able to position themselves strategically because civilians were everywhere. They had to also look after the safety of these bystanders, wasting precious time which could have been allotted to resolve the situation.
Talking about the safety, there was one civilian who was wounded because of the stray bullet that hit his foot. In situations like the said hostage-taking incident, you can never predict what could potentially happen, so instead of risking your life, you would rather opt to stay away from the vicinity.
It can be observed that the media coverage by the different networks was very detailed that the public need not know most of them. In addition, it was also aired that the hostage-taker was watching the news the whole time. When he saw his brother being arrested by the police, that was when he got agitated and started firing.
The assault team also had a hard time strategically positioning the team because they were blinded by the heavy lights of these television networks. From the inside, the hostage-taker could easily spot where his enemies are because they were very visible.
I therefore recommend, the authorities should have standard operating procedure-involving the Media for situations like this, especially when what’s at stake is security and safety of the majority.
World Peace everyone!