MANILA – The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Monday signed a landmark partnership agreement with the University of the Philippines-Open University (UPOU) as part of the efforts to further professionalize the service.

The memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed by the two institutions provides for the creation of the PNP Open University -- an online learning method that enables police personnel to fulfill their mandatory and specialized schooling.

PNP chief, Gen. Rodolfo Azurin Jr., thanked the UPOU for engaging with the police organization in providing a holistic and multi-disciplinary approach to further enhance and strengthen the skills and capabilities of the PNP personnel.

“Despite the equally-trying times of peace and uncertainty, we have delivered more than the objectives we have set, true to our solemn oath of serving and protecting the Filipino people and our beloved country. Guided by the peace and security framework “MKK=K” or “Malasakit, Kaayusan, Kapayapaan tungo sa Kaunlaran” and the “KASIMBAYANAN Program," comes the assurance that the Philippine National Police will remain steadfast towards the full realization of the government’s aspiration of a safer, peaceful, more progressive and stronger equitable society, in line with the development goals of the President Ferdinand R Marcos Jr. on food security, energy sufficiency, industrial peace, and sustainable development,” he said during the flag-raising rites at their headquarters in Camp Crame, Quezon City.

Azurin said the open university was conceptualized by PNP directorial staff chief, Maj. Gen. Arthur Bisnar, when he was still the director of the Directorate for Human Resource and Doctrine Development (DHRDD).

The PNP chief added that police officers can take online classes while off-duty, which means this will not affect the performance of their duties.

“Ibig sabihin madadagdagan po ang level of competence ng ating kapulisan once they enroll po diyan and at the same time magkakaroon po sila ng ibang pananaw po, perception as far as yung konsepto ng policing na ginagawa nila or natutunan nila dito po sa ibang mga training schools (This means that the level of competence of our police force will increase once they enroll there and at the same time they will have a different perspective, perception as far as the concept of policing that they do or what they learned here in other trainings schools),” said Azurin.

3 cops among Metrobank's 'Outstanding Filipinos'

Meanwhile, on the same occasion, three PNP personnel were awarded the prestigious 2022 Metrobank Foundation Search for the Outstanding Filipinos.

This year’s outstanding police officers are Capt. Rosalino Panlaqui, town police chief of Jalajala, Rizal province; Col. Lambert Suerte, Batallion Commander of the Regional Mobile Force Battalion of the National Capital Region (RMFB-NCR); and Executive M/Sgt. Rogelio Rodriguez Jr., Investigator of Anti-Fraud and Commercial Crime Unit.

Panlaqui is known for building a strong relationship between the police and the community.

Suerte’s career highlight was when he led his men to victory and safety during the Marawi siege in 2017.

Rodriguez was instrumental in the arrest of an international terrorist and the prevention of a lethal attack.

As public servants, these awardees have shown great courage, dedication, and professionalism in line with their mission to serve and protect the people.

They also embody the aspirations of the organization to actively take its role essential in making every life beautiful in a safe and secure environment.

“We also extend our warmest congratulations to the Metrobank Foundation Inc. for the more than four decades of delivering responsive and relevant social service to the Filipino people,” Azurin said.

3 PMC officers top Naval Staff Course

Meanwhile, three Philippine Marine Corps (PMC) officers garnered top place finishes in the three-month long Naval Staff Course held at the Naval Education, Training, and Doctrine Command (NETDC) which formally concluded on Sept. 9.

The NETDC is located at Naval Station Leovigildo Gantioqui in San Antonio, Zambales.

The Naval Staff Course is a three-month career course aimed at preparing company-grade officers for higher command responsibility and staff positions in the Philippine Navy (PN).

"Capt. Marever Evans V. Taghap PN(M), logistics officer of the Assault Armor Battalion, graduated top of the class and received awards for obtaining the highest grade in academics, Naval Staff writing, position paper, and best in Staff Study," the PMC said in a Facebook post on Monday.

Meanwhile, Marine Capt. Princess L. Jude and Marine Capt. Vanessa P. Factor ranked third and fourth, respectively.

Both also garnered awards and merits for their outstanding performance.

All in all, 14 PMC officers took and passed the Naval Staff Course.

“I may not have known what you have been through and how much you have struggled but I am positive that regardless of your ranks and class status, you are all victors," NETDC deputy commander Commodore Alfonso Torres said.

Meanwhile, PMC commandant, Maj. Gen. Charlton Sean M. Gaerlan lauded the Marine officers for their academic excellence. (with Priam Nepomuceno/PNA)