DIRECTOR General Oscar Albayalde, chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP), said on Monday, January 14, that Senior Superintendent Francisco Ebreo, who was relieved as acting director of Bacolod City Police Office (BCPO), was not included in the PNP drugs watchlist or the President’s.
Ebreo, along with four other police officers, including three BCPO personnel, were transferred to the Regional Personnel Holding and Accounting Unit in Iloilo City effective January 12 after President Rodrigo Duterte tagged them and a local politician in the illegal drugs during his visit to Bacolod City to attend a birthday party over the weekend.
The four other alleged narco-cops were Superintendents Ritchie Yatar, Nasruddin Tayuan, and Allan Macapagal, and Senior Inspector Victor Paulino.
Tayuan was earlier moved to Mindanao in May 2018 upon the order of the national headquarters.
Albayalde said the relief of the five police does not mean that they are already guilty.
They will be given due process and will be given the chance to prove their innocence, he added.
“As far as I am concerned, wala (siya sa PNP watchlist. Wala rin siya sa list ni President Rodrigo Duterte),” Albayalde said in a press conference in Camp Crame.
“Probably, yes (nasa list siya ni Presidente),” he added.
Ebreo had previously told the media that he believed that the truth will prevail.
For his part, Chief Superintendent John Bulalacao, regional director of Police Regional Office- Western Visayas, who was earlier surprised about Ebreo’s implication in illegal drugs, refused to comment about the recent statement of the PNP, adding that they are still validating and investigating the report.
Ebreo and the four other police were supposed to meet Duterte in Malacañang on January 14 but it was postponed.
The PNP regional directors and the Armed Forces of the Philippines were also supposed to have a command conference with the Presidenton January 14.
Bulalacao said he did not know the reason because he just received a text message informing him about the postponement of the meeting.
The meeting was moved to Tuesday, January 15.
Bulalacao earlier said Ebreo has been “performing well” particularly in the campaign of the PNP against illegal drugs and criminality.
However, Albayalde said Duterte as the commander-in-chief has his own sources of information.
“Well una wala tayo sigurong karapatan para i-question ‘yung decision ng ating Pangulo (in the first place, maybe, we do not have the right to question the decision of our President) because we know for a fact that the President has unlimited sources of information also not only coming from the PNP. If that is the wisdom of the President kailangan implement natin ‘yun (we have to implement that),” he said.
It was not the first time that Duterte gave such order that caught the PNP, particularly Albayalde, by surprise.
Meanwhile, Senior Superintendent Henry Biñas, who just assumed as officer-in-charge of BCPO on January 14, said he will continue to provide police presence in the streets and intensify their campaign against criminalities and illegal drugs. (With reports from SunStar Philippines)