Police laud Robredo, vow to continue his legacies-A A +A
Wednesday, August 22, 2012
OFFICIALS and employees of the National Police Commission (Napolcom) on Wednesday paid a tribute to their chairman, Local Government Secretary Jesse Robredo, with a promise to continue the programs and reforms he initiated in the law enforcement arm.
"The reforms that he started will continue and his legacy shall live on," said Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Nicanor Bartolome, who is also an ex officio Napolcom commissioner.
The PNP is under the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), the agency of Robredo, who was also the chairman of the Napolcom.
With Robredo's "honesty, strategy, hard work, and multitude of virtues that made him an efficient leader," the PNP chief said the secretary introduced new concepts in law enforcement and public safety, including good governance.
"With his passing, Secretary Robredo left behind a legacy of bureaucratic transparency and public accountability," Bartolome said.
He added that the Cabinet official has always believed that good governance is possible within the institution.
"The PNP was enlightened on the importance of good governance," Bartolome told reporters.
He added that the PNP will always remember Robredo for his outpour of support to the organization.
He lauded, for instance, Robredo's efforts in increasing the budget of PNP field units by 54 percent, or from P600 per capita to P1000 per capita.
"This is just among his many other contributions [in] improving the police service," said Bartolome, who also claimed that Robredo's efforts for the PNP transformation program will be unforgettable.
Napolcom Commissioner Constancia De Guzman also said Robredo once reiterated to her his concern about the PNP transformation process and emphasized the need for its success.
She said Robredo wanted to ensure the whole transformation of every police officer 1 nationwide up to the officials at the national headquarters.
"Normal instructions from a committed boss," De Guzman said in a statement read by her senior staff.
As a boss, Robredo was regarded as a humble leader who calls De Guzman "Ma'am" even though she is a subordinate, according to Luisito Palmera, also a Napolcom commissioner.
"I admire his vision, simplicity, dedication to duty, and most of all he's being down to earth as a leader," said Eduardo Escueta, Napolcom vice chairman.
Robredo was also seen as a high official who would even look closely at things meant for those who are below him.
"He paid close attention to details from which he based his decisions. These details are commonly meant for subordinates in the implementation of his orders," said DILG Undersecretary Rico Puno.
"He demanded to be abreast with all what's going on in his department," Puno added.
With his humility, he was also considered approachable who is concerned to the welfare of others, according to Alejandro Urro, a Napolcom commissioner.
Palmera attested to this character of Robredo, recounting an unforgettable moment with the late official.
"He asked me if I have medical problem. He put his right arm on my shoulder, embraced me, tapped my shoulder while looking directly to my eye, telling me: Commissioner Luis, take care of your health," Palmera said.
A public servant, a man for others
As head of the DILG that includes the PNP and Napolcom, Robredo had specific visions for both institutions.
For the PNP, Robredo's focus was to eliminate graft, to initiate reform, and to professionalize the law enforcement institution, according to Urro.
On the other hand, Napolcom commissioners were always reminded by Robredo of the timely resolution of cases.
"He has always said that ordinary folks, ordinary people will always appreciate steady imposition of penalties to erring police personnel," Palmera said.
The commissioner also described Robredo as "one of a kind" and a "different breed of public servant."
"In these contemporary times, rarely you see people adulating a public official of this magnitude," he said.
Meanwhile, De Guzman described Robredo as a very visible and committed public servant "who kept touching the lives of many."
Joseph Gonzalo, Acting Deputy Executive Officer of the Napolcom, shared the same sentiment and thanked Robredo for being a "man for others."
"Surely he touched our lives for his integrity, competence, dedication, and commitment to public service and for being a champion of good governance," Gonzalo said.
A loving father
But while he is hailed as a great leader, Bartolome, the PNP chief, also described Robredo as a family man, to which other Napolcom officials agreed.
"We know how very close he is to his wife, Attorney Lenny, and to his three children, Aica, Particia, and Jillian," Gonzalo said.
"Most importantly, Secretary Jesse Robredo was a loving father to his family," Puno said.
The DILG undersecretary recalled that moments before the flight, he talked to Robredo about his daughter whom he was eager to see participate in a swimming competition.
"From our short conversation, his demeanor showed how much he valued and cherished his family. He showed that despite all the demands of his work as secretary, he put his family first," he said.
But it was not only his family who grieved over Robredo's loss.
"The whole country stood still. The whole country was saddened. The whole country was united in remembering how remarkable as a person Secretary Robredo was," Escueta, the Napolcom vice chairman, said.
Bartolome added that the entire nation grieves the loss of a "kindhearted leader who gave a new whole meaning to public service and good governance."
The PNP chief also assured that Robredo's loss will never be in vain with the promise to continue his legacies.
"Sir Jesse, you can now rest," Bartolome said while looking at a tarpaulin behind him that shows Robredo's image. (Emmanuel Louis Bacani/Sunnex)