Police official confirms revamp of station chiefs

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Tuesday, May 6, 2014


SHAPE up or ship out.”

This was the warning issued by Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama to members of the Cebu City police force after learning that the city’s crime rate increased and fewer cases were solved in the first quarter of this year.

Senior Supt. Rey Lyndon Lawas, acting chief of the Police Regional Office 7 Regional Investigation and Detective Management Division (RIDMD), urged the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) to review its crime prevention strategies.

“We don't want to find fault,” Lawas said. “Instead, we want to show them this is the situation we have noticed for them to take action.”

The CCPO recorded more than 3,000 crimes in the first quarter of this year compared to about 2,500 in the same period in 2013, or an increase of more than 22 percent.

The rate at which crimes are solved, on the other hand, declined.

Revamp

After the crime statistics were released, CCPO Director Noli Romana confirmed in a text message to Sun.Star Cebu that there will be a revamp of police station chiefs starting today.

He did not say which stations will be affected but the revamp will reportedly focus on those with high crime rates.

According to the statistics presented by the Investigation and Detective Management Branch (IDMB), the police stations with the highest number of reported crimes are Police Station 2 (formerly Fuente Police Station), Mabolo, Parian and Waterfont.

The rising crime incidence in Cebu City has been observed since 2012. Although the crime rate from February to November 2011 was 6,806 or more than 25 percent lower than the previous year’s figure.

Deserving

Rama, during his regular media conference yesterday, said CCPO officials, station commanders and other policemen should prove their worth in serving and protecting residents.

“They should do their job because we are talking about a very important ingredient in the city, which is peace and order,” he said.

He said the city’s peace and order has to improve before the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Summit next year. Some of the minor Apec meetings will be held in Cebu.

The mayor also pointed out that CCPO officials and personnel have to perform better, especially since the City Government increased their monthly allowance to P4,000 this year from P2,000 earlier.

Rama said he does not want to withhold the allowance as doing so will only hurt the families of the police and would not address the problem.

Transfer

He said he would rather have those who are unable to perform well transferred outside of Cebu City.

The CCPO has yet to submit a report on the crime rate in Cebu City to the Police Coordinating and Advisory Council (Pcac), headed by Vice Mayor Edgar Labella.

Lawas, in a separate interview, said theft, robbery and carnapping were the most common crimes committed in the first quarter of this year.

While more crimes occurred, the police’s ability to solve crimes decreased. The police measures crime solution efficiency (COE) and crime clearance efficiency (CCE).

In Cebu City, CCE fell 4.7 percent and COE declined 1.6 percent.

Innovate

A case is considered cleared when an offender is identified or has been charged. A case is solved if the offender has been arrested.

Lawas said CCPO has been directed to come up with innovative measures to address the increase in crime incidents and solve pending cases.

IDMB Chief Aileen Recla, who presented the statistics to the media last week, said the crime rate in some police stations in Cebu City might be historically high. But she did not discount the possibility that some police personnel lacked supervision.

According to the IDMB, Police Station 2 has the highest number of crimes recorded among the city's police stations with 407 index crimes and 37 non-index crimes.

It is followed by Mabolo Police Station with 220 index crimes and 80 non-index crimes; Waterfront Police Station with 220 index crimes and 63 non-index crimes; and the Parian Police Station with 206 index crimes and 51 non-index crimes.

Index crimes are those committed against persons and properties, while non-index crimes are violations of special laws, such as those on illegal drugs, gambling and loose firearms.

The San Nicolas Police Station has the least number of crimes reported among the 11 police stations in the city.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on May 07, 2014.

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