PNP orders administrative relief of Negros Oriental provincial director, three other officials
The Philippine National Police ( PNP) ordered on Tuesday the relief of Negros Oriental provincial director and three other chiefs of police.
“I have ordered today the administrative relief of the Provincial Director of Negros Oriental, Police Colonel Raul Tacaca and three Chiefs of Police to give way to an impartial investigation into the death of 14 suspects during a recent series of police operations,” said Police General Oscar Albayalde, the PNP head.
“I would like to emphasize that their relief is not a punitive measure for alleged actions or inactions rather it is an administrative relief to ensure that they will not be able to exert any influence in the ongoing investigation by the Internal Affairs Service and the Directorate for Investigation and Detective Management,” he added.
Albayalde said the three other police officers relieved were Police Lt Col Patricio Degay, chief of Canlaon City station, Police Captain Michael Rubia, chief of the Sta. Catalina municipal station, and Police Lieutenant Kelvin Roy Mamaradlo, chief of police of Manjuyod municipal station.
“I leave it to the Regional Director of PRO7, Police Brig Gen. Debold Sinas to designate officers-in-charge in the vacated positions as temporary replacement,” he said.
Albayalde said the investigation aims to determine possible lapses during the police operations and to reveal the circumstances surrounding the incidents.
“The purpose of the fact-finding investigation is to determine whether there were any lapses in the series of police operations carried out by the local police units involved and whether or not the rules prescribed in the Revised Police Operations Procedures were properly observed,” he said.
“While we maintain the regularity of these police operations, as being above-board and duly approved by judicial authorities against criminal offenders and suspects in criminal cases, we find it prudent on our part to initiate an investigation if only to discount any doubts and satisfy the requirements of fair and judicious investigation in fairness to our personnel also,” he added.
“We are confident the investigations will be able to put together all circumstances surrounding these incidents and achieve the real purpose to seek the truth,” he noted.
Albayalde said the PNP will provide legal assistance for the policemen involved if needed while he warned the public against fake news and propaganda of the leftist group.
“We do not want to unduly condemn our personnel for doing their job well of implementing lawful orders of the Court. In fact, the PNP will provide them legal assistance if necessary. We appeal to the public to be circumspect in making hasty conclusions and passing judgment on the police,” he said.
“Let us not be fooled by leftist propaganda and fake news of a purported massacre. All deaths did not happen in one place, but were the result of implementation of separate search warrants that went awry when the subjects of the search operations put-up armed resistance,” he added. Robina Asido/DMS