NEGROS Occidental Governor Alfredo Marañon Jr. challenged policemen in the province to double their efforts especially after President Rodrigo Duterte approved the salary increase for the military, police and other uniformed personnel.
Marañon met with Senior Superintendent Rodolfo Castil Jr., director of Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office (Nocppo), along with the chiefs of police of towns and cities in the province, at the Provincial Capitol Tuesday during the traditional New Year’s Call of the Philippine National Police.
The governor lauded the provincial police for their accomplishments last year as he reaffirmed his commitment and support to Nocppo.
In fact, Marañon endorsed an P8-million budget to fund the anti-drug operations of the provincial police for this year.
The governor challenged the policemen to work harder because of their pay increase.
“There’s no reason why we should not also return that with good service to the people,” Marañon said as he commended Duterte for approving the salary increase, which will take effect this month.
“That’s political will. If the leader has the will to do something, he will do it,” the governor added.
He said he is hoping the provincial police will “not only double, but triple their efforts” to fast track progress.
“We are relatively peaceful compare to the other provinces. Thank you for your efforts so we’ll become peaceful here. There’s no progress if there’s no peace,” he told the policemen.
He pointed out that no tourists will visit and no investors will come to the province if it’s not peaceful.
“It’s very important that we should continue to cooperate and be vigilant to make our province more progressive. Like the airplane, we have taken off. Our progress can’t be stopped. So it’s important to maintain the peace and order here,” he said.
He said the local economy is improving.
“The income of the province had an annual increase of 12.5 percent. Tourism arrivals are also increasing,” he added.
He said that criminality will be reduced if there are many jobs and the lives of the people will improved. “I believe crime is related to poverty.”
Marañon, in an interview, said he doesn’t believe the salary increase of the police will also mitigate corruption among their ranks.
“If a person is corrupt, he is really corrupt no matter what,” he said.
The governor said the salary increase will help the policemen and their families. “They could provide better house, better school for their children.”
Meanwhile, the provincial police bared their accomplishments last year.
Crime incidents in the province dropped by 23.47 percent in 2017 compared to the cases in 2016.