FIRING LINE: Probe entire PNP

FIRING LINE: Probe entire PNP

The Philippine National Police (PNP) should investigate the whole organization and not merely the colonels whom President Duterte said were dabbling in illegal drugs.

Duterte earlier  revealed in a forum attended by Russian officials, world leaders, VIPs, and journalists in Russia that two generals are playing with illegal drugs (He later clarified they were colonels). The President did not mention their names and whether they belong to the police or the military.

Although the President wants him investigated by the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), PNP Chief Oscar Albayalde doubts that he is one of the officials alluded to in Duterte’s speech.

Albayalde believes that the allegations against him were all part of internal politics meant to discredit whoever he would recommend as his successor.

It’s surprising that, apart from the Senate investigations, the PNP seems clueless on the involvement of some of its top officials in illegal drugs.

Brigadier General Bernard Banac, PNP spokesperson, guarantees that the organization remains true, professional, disciplined, and steadfast in the campaign against criminality, illegal drugs, and in its internal cleansing.

Perhaps, parallel to a Senate inquiry and a DILG-PNP probe, the President may well form a multi-agency fact-finding body to include the National Bureau of Investigation, the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, and the Bureau of Internal Revenue, to recommend dismissal and prosecution of those at fault as well as propose measures to prevent corrupt practices.

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Some members of the PNP called ninja cops are involved in the recycling and reselling of illegal drugs. This issue became controversial after Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong, former head of the PNP Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG), revealed their existence during a Senate executive session.

Albayalde was then chief of the Pampanga police when 13 of his cops were accused of taking 160 kilos of shabu during a raid on a drug den.

In a recent Senate hearing, Magalong accused Albayalde of seeking to put off the dismissal order against his former officers from Pampanga. The PNP Chief denied this.      

The criminal case against Albayalde’s former subordinates was dismissed due to a lack of evidence. However, the administrative penalty against them was downgraded to a mere demotion.

Magalong said he had received death threats after accusing Albayalde of protecting ninja cops. Even his family was also threatened.

What allegedly worries Magalong is the seriousness of his adversaries to contact gun-for-hire groups. He has already requested additional security from the PNP.

He also received offers of help from senior officers from the organization. They would have reportedly reacted differently if they didn’t feel Magalong was fighting for them.

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