HIS son had applied to be in the police service but did not pass the requirements.
The father, a retired policeman, approached a senior officer at the Police Regional Office (PRO) 7 and offered him P40,000 to waive the requirements and let his son join the service.
But Senior Supt. Renato Renoballes Dugan, chief of the Regional Personnel and Human Resources Development Division (RPHRDD) 7 refused the offer done inside his office yesterday.
Dugan told Alejandro Romarate, who had the rank of SPO3 upon his retirement in 2005, that what he was doing was against the law. He showed Romarate a tarpaulin hanging in his office.
Printed on the tarpaulin: “Pahibalo: Walay bayad ang among serbisyo (Announcement: Our service is free of charge).”
Irwin Romarate, the failed police applicant, did not answer calls from Sun.Star Cebu but texted “no comment” when he was asked by text for his comment.
The tarpaulin sign instructs the public to inform Dugan if anyone from his office tries to ask for money in exchange for their service. His mobile number is also listed.
Past 10 a.m. yesterday, the retired Romarate came to Dugan’s office and offered him P40,000 in exchange for Irwin’s entry in the police service. Dugan said he felt insulted.
Romarate’s alleged attempted bribery was caught on a cellphone camera by one of Dugan’s staff.
Dugan said Romarate was arrogant and did not let up in his money offer despite seeing the scene being recorded.
In the video, Romarate is seen counting the P1,000 bills in front of Dugan. He then hands over the money to the police official. Dugan holds the money for a while but returns them to Romarate.
Dugan said he was not able to arrest Romarate because he was called by a superior for an immediate meeting.
Romarate allegedly first asked help from Dugan about two months ago. He begged the police official to let his son enter the uniformed service.
“Akong anak nangapply before, wala mada. Karon sir, mohatag ko nimo og kwarenta mil para siniguro makasulod (My son applied to become a policeman but he was turned down. Now I will pay you P40,000 to make sure he gets in),” Dugan quoted Romarate as saying.
“Dapat di na nimo buhaton. Kay kon naay mo-take advantage kuhaon ang imong kwarenta mil nya i-quits ra ka, luoy kaayo ka (You shouldn’t do that because someone might take advantage of you and get your money without any guarantee your son will be admitted),” the police official replied.
Dugan then asked if Romarate saw the anti-corruption announcement outside the RPHRDD 7 office, which is inside the Camp Sergio Osmeña in Cebu City.
“Nakasabot ka (Do you understand that)?” Dugan asked Romarate, who replied: “O, Sir, pero kalimtan lang sa nato na, sir. Dili lang ta motuo ana sa imong gisuwat (Yes, sir, but let’s just forget it for now. Let’s disregard your reminder).”
“Master, ayaw nag buhata…kay kanang imong anak definitely kon masud na pud na, ang tendency niya is mobawi siya because from the very beginning sa pag-apply niya og PO1 dili na mao ang iyang pamaagi (Sir, please don’t do that because definitely when your son gets in, the tendency is he will not be a good policeman, he will recover whatever you spent for him to get in),” said Dugan.
The police official believes Romarate is desperate for his son to follow in his footsteps.
Dugan said he asked Romarate if he was not scared to face charges before the prosecutor’s office.
“Aw, puyde man na nako i-deny, Sir (I can deny it),” Dugan quoted Romarate.
“Naa may mga witness (But there are witnesses),” said Dugan.
Romarate allegedly bragged that he already has a lawyer to defend him.
An attempted bribery complaint will be filed against Romarate, a native of Alcoy town in southern Cebu.
Dugan said a person who wants to be part of the Philippine National Police should not bribe their way inside the organization.
“What will help you get in is your qualification, your determination and your trust in God. That’s what will help you become a policeman,” he said.
Meanwhile, a store owner in Moalboal complained yesterday against a police officer of the Cebu City Police Office for abuses.
Dennis Ereño, 43, told Senior Supt. Rey Lyndon Lawas that last March 31, SPO1 Walter Macasling challenged him to a fistfight after he refused to serve the policeman with beer.
The two are neighbors in Barangay Tunga.
Ereño refused to Macasling beer because the policeman had not paid for two bottles of beer he ordered from his store in 2014.
Before the incident, Macasling and Ereño attended the graduation ceremony of their children, who are classmates.
The cop and his friends later went inside Ereño’s videoke joint and bought beer from another store.
When the group wanted more beer, the police officer ordered Ereño to get some but Ereñorefused unless Macasling paid up.
Macasling kicked the plastic chair.
“Nagtinarong tag trabaho ning kinabuhia, kita ra man nuoy abusohan. Di pa gyud sibilyan, pulis pa gyud (We work so hard to earn and he abuses us, and he’s a policeman),” said Ereño.
He said Macasling had harassed their neighbors before only that they are scared to file complaints against the policeman.
Ereño said he has had enough of his neighbor’s abuse.
Lawas, the deputy regional director for operations, advised Ereño to get a certificate that will enable the latter to press criminal charges against the policeman.
He also instructed the Regional Investigation and Detective Management Division 7 to investigate Macasling.
Lawas is glad there are persons like Ereño who are brave enough to report a police officer’s wrongdoing.
“The public has to help clean the police organization,” he said.