Palace: Duterte wants ‘honest cop’ to lead PNP
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte does not want to appoint an official who has been charged with any irregularity to the helm of the Philippine National Police, presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo said at a press briefing Monday.
Oscar Albayalde, former PNP chief, retired in November but not without going on “non-duty status” over alleged irregularities in a drug raid in 2013, when he was provincial police director of Pampanga.
“What he is saying is he wants an honest cop,” Panelo said. “He does not want any cop who has been charged with any irregularity, any infraction, whether administrative or criminal.”
“Baka wala pang nakakarating sa kanya yung mga magagaling [na candidates,]” Panelo said.
“Marami namang magagaling, pero [baka] hindi nakakarating sa kaniya yung mga pangalan. He didn’t explain. We’ll have to wait. He said if he could not choose then he will just take over temporarily as the head.”
(Maybe the names of the able candidates haven’t reached him yet. There are a lot of capable ones, but maybe their names have not reached him.)
The PNP, which has been eager to follow Duterte’s directives even without a written order, has expressed willingness to let the president take over supervision of the national police.
Asked if this was indicative of possible mistrust in the three current candidates for PNP chief, Panelo was quick to assert that the chief executive said no such thing.
“Wala naman siyang sinabi di siya bilib, basta sabi niyang di siya nakakapili,” the presidential mouthpiece said in quelling concerns.
(He said no such thing about him having no belief in them. He just said he hasn’t chosen yet.)
Lt.Gen. Archie Gamboa, who holds the PNP’s second highest position as deputy chief for administration, was announced as the officer-in-charge of the PNP shortly after Albayalde relinquished his post.
Joining him in contending for the police force’s top position are Lt. Gen. Camilo Pancratius Cascolan and Maj. Gen. Guillermo Lorenzo Eleazar.
Panelo also expressed confidence that until the president appoints a PNP chief, the current officer-in-charge would make do to fulfill the duties left behind by Albayalde.
“Ba’t naman hot na hot tayo i-pressure siya? You must remember that there is an OIC. Eh magaling naman yung OIC. So siguro kuntento pa siya na magaling yung OIC,” Panelo said.
“Aba, ganyan talaga. That’s the prerogative of the President. Hindi natin alam [kung kailan.] Let’s wait for the president.”
(Why are we so hot on pressuring him? You must remember that there is an OIC. He’s competent too. So the president is probably content with the OIC’s capabilities. That’s just the way it is. That’s the prerogative of the president. We don’t know when. Let’s just wait for the president.)