PNP to continue gathering information against enemies of state: Albayalde
Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Oscar Albayalde said they will continue on gathering information as its their responsibility to protect Filipinos from alleged enemies of the state.
This came a day after he relieved three intelligence officials who allegedly leaked a memorandum ordering profiling against the members of ACT-Teachers partylist.
“Of course, it was stop (profiling) but gathering information (will continue). Yes of course and gathering information, there are several ways in gathering information,” Albayalde said in a press briefing in Camp Crame.
“This is the very reason we are doing this, to separate those doing illegal things from those who do not. That’s the purpose of what we call intelligence gathering,” he added.
The PNP chief said he became mad because the incident caused panic and anxiety to teachers.
He said the ACT Teachers partylist can file cases against them since it’s their right but the PNP can also file countercharges against the group.
“Well that's their part. It’s their right, isn't it? ,” said Albayalde. “If they can file a case, we can always file countercharges also… We are all protected by law, remember that,” he added.
Albayalde said they are not saying all members of ACT Teachers Partylist were communist rebel supporters.
"Not everyone are enemies of the state. The others probably were just used... We are not saying this ACT (Teachers) is the enemy of the state. We are pointing here of individual not the organization that’s why there is intelligence gathering and we have been doing intelligence gathering since time immemorial,” he said.
He said intelligence gathering is part of their mandate as a law enforcement agency.
“The stand of our government is, the government would like to finish the problem of internal security problem particularly the problem on CPP-NPA-NDF at the end of the term of the president. So, this intelligence operatives we are doing, there is nothing (wrong) or we are not violating the law by gathering evidence or information,” Albayalde explained.
“It's part of the mandate of the PNP as a law enforcement agency. Same as when you are under drug watch list. We are working on those people in the drug watch list. There are validations conducted,” he said.
Albayalde reiterated there is no need to feel guilty if you are not supporting armed rebellion.
“So if they are not guilty of supporting the rebellion then why will they be afraid? As I said, there is no law stating you can’t join as a member but the thing is that organization was enumerated by (CPP leader Joma) Sison. So you should also be probably be able to take the consequences for the being a member,” he said.
He even said he is thankful that through this incident, they were able to find who is not properly doing their job.
“Actually, we should be thankful to them...because we are getting information here. Probably, that’s why we relieved these intelligence operatives, they did not do their job properly that’s why there is anxiety (in the public) but that doesn't mean that you are being pinpointed already,” said Albayalde. Ella Dionisio/DMS