THE very organization that President Rodrigo Duterte had been heaping praises on since he assumed power has become his biggest source of embarrassment, although “embarrassment” may be too kind a word to describe the slap in the face received by the Punisher because of the actions of a few.
Imagine. A foreign national kidnapped and then killed inside Camp Crame. The perpetrators, all men in blue.
That Duterte would go on a rampage was not only understandable, but also expected. So was the suspension of the Philippine National Police’s (PNP) operations against illegal drugs. That way, it could focus on going after scalawags, or cleansing its own ranks, as they say in official parlance.
This must be done if Malacañang wants to regain the moral high ground it has lost momentarily as a result of this debacle.
With that declaration, I’ve been expecting the airwaves to be full of news of police heads rolling. I figured, that’s the least Malacañang can offer the public after waging a war of attrition against drug suspects.
I mean I didn’t bat an eyelash as the death toll rose and the bodies piled, either killed in “legitimate” operations or in the hands of unidentified killers, because I believed, no, I believe in the government’s campaign against drugs.
So if Duterte and PNP Chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa are really serious in getting rid of corruption in the force, they should apply the same zeal in going after rogue cops.
So I await the first casualty of this internal purge.
Ah, still waiting, by the way.
Here in our neck of the woods, the Police Regional Office 7 announced that internal affairs filed criminal and administrative complaints before the Office of the Deputy Ombudsman for the Military and Other Law Enforcement Offices against nine active officers who could not explain their lavish lifestyle.
Apparently, owning several cars is an offense, especially when the owners did not disclose this fact in their SALNs.
Eight of the respondents are police commissioned officers while one is a police non-commissioned officer.
Seventy-two active cops, who are living in luxury, are also being subjected to a lifestyle check.
Senior Supt. Jonas Ejoc, regional internal affairs chief, did not divulge their names. He should.
After all, the government, when it launched its war against illegal drugs, was never shy in naming suspected drug personalities whose guilt had yet to be proven in court. In fact, the President made a public spectacle out of it, reading a list of names of government officials with alleged links to the illegal drug trade on live TV without offering any evidence.
So it’s only fair the police should do the same.