PRRD wants dismissal of scalawag cops

By Ruth Abbey Gita-Carlos

January 11, 2020, 10:12 am

<p>Police officers.<em> (File photo)</em></p>

Police officers. (File photo)

MANILA -- President Rodrigo R. Duterte said he needs more time to rid the Philippine National Police (PNP) of police officers involved in corrupt activities and rampant narcotics trade.

In an exclusive interview with ABS-CBN aired Friday night, Duterte said he would first cleanse the PNP before appointing a new head.

"I need to purge the PNP. And PNP chief has only limited power," he said when asked why it was taking him so long to appoint the next PNP chief.

"Those already tainted with corruption and especially drugs, wala, tanggal talaga (I have no choice but to dismiss them from service)," he added.

Duterte earlier tasked Interior Secretary Eduardo Año to supervise the PNP, while Lt. Gen. Archie Gamboa stays as PNP officer-in-charge.

The President was confident that Año could help him cleanse the police force.

He also assured that rogue cops accused of being involved in corruption and illegal drugs would be given due process.

"(With) Año who supervises the (PNP), the police would be more equipped with the powers under the law to effect the changes," Duterte said. "I want those tainted or those who have records about drugs, out. Due process din (We will give them due process). We'll have an investigation."

While Duterte has yet to name the new police chief, strong contenders for the highest post at the PNP are Gamboa; Lt. Gen. Camilo Cascolan, deputy chief for operations; and Lt. Gen. Guillermo Eleazar, erstwhile Metro Manila police director and now head of the directorial staff.

Central Visayas regional director Brig. Gen. Valeriano de Leon and Calabarzon regional director Brig. Gen. Vicente Danao Jr. are also being considered for the PNP's top post. (PNA)