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18 PNP 3rd-level officers yet to ‘open themselves’ to probe
ONLY 18 3rd-level officers of the Philippine National Police (PNP) have yet to submit their courtesy resignations which will “open” them to any investigation, including the scrutiny of the “5-Man Committee” as of Tuesday, the PNP spokesperson said.
However, Colonel Jean Fajardo said that out of the 18, at least eight will be retiring in the next few days or weeks, and this could be the reason why they are yet to tender their courtesy resignations to President Ferdinand “Bongbong” R. Marcos Jr. following an appeal from Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Benjamin “Benhur” C. Abalos Jr. last week.
The PNP spokesperson did not say how many of the 18 are star-rank officers or generals but added that their Directorate for Personnel and Records Management is already collating the resignation letters of the 935 3rd-level officers or 935 out of the 953 senior PNP officials.
Part of the resignation letter prepared by the PNP showed that the 3rd-level officers will be signing the following: “Thus, in response to the said appeal, I am opening myself to any investigation, including the scrutiny of the 5-man committee created for this purpose.”
“If my involvement in any illegal drug activities will be established based on evidence, I will submit my unqualified courtesy resignation or optional retirement, whichever is applicable under the circumstance and as authorized by the existing laws, rules and regulations, without prejudice of filing appropriate cases against me for violation of Republic Act No. 9165 as amended and other related cases, if evidence so warrants,” the letter also says.
Once the January 31 deadline set by PNP chief, General Rodolfo S. Azurin Jr., for them to file their courtesy resignations is over, the documents will be transmitted by the PNP-DPRM to the DILG and, eventually, the five-man committee.
On Monday, Azurin said that a total of 29 3rd-level PNP officers had already filed their courtesy resignations before Marcos Jr. exactly 12 days after Abalos made an impassioned appeal to them to help cleanse the 227,000-organization of officials with drug links.
The top cop appealed to those who had not yet heeded the call of Abalos “to join us and be a part of this noble intention.”
“This is a chance for us to address issues affecting our organization and to demonstrate the integrity and solidarity of the PNP amidst any challenges we are facing. We want to ensure that the PNP is a professional and transparent organization. The public must have trust and confidence in the PNP as a whole, and that is why we are taking this big step,” he said.
Azurin, at the same time, renewed the PNP’s demand for all members of the five-man committee, which will screen the 3rd-level officers to be objective, fair and circumspect in all their undertakings during the process.
“We are expecting that they will maintain their impeccable character and integrity so that the result of all their evaluation will be acceptable to everyone. Similarly, we appeal that the process will be devoid of personal and political biases,” he said.
Azurin said that as they heed the SILG’s (Secretary of the Interior and Local Government) call, they also respectfully demand that the five-man member of the committee who will be reviewing the records and characters of 3rd-level officers exercise utmost objectivity and fairness.
“They must maintain their impeccable character, probity and unquestionable integrity throughout the process, free from political and personal biases, so that the result will be acceptable to all,” he explained.
According to the PNP chief, they are looking at what’s holding the other senior officials from filing their courtesy resignations. He said that two of them are police generals, while five are colonels who will be retiring within the 1st quarter of the year.
“But I hope they are still finding a discernment, na pinag-iisipang mabuti if they will file or not or baka iniisip naman na sa January 31 pa ang deadline,” he said.
The top cop again said that one of the sentiments raised by 3rd-level officers is the possibility that the career they have established and worked for over the past 30 years or more “may go to waste” once their courtesy resignations are accepted by the five-man committee.
“Sinasabi nila, ito lang po ang career namin, pinagtrabahuhan namin for the last 30 years and me agam-agam, wala kaming kasalanan, baka magkamali ang mag-eevaluate, mag-assess at kahit wala kaming kasalanan, o baka me nakagalit, me issues in the past na baka gawing issues sa kanila kaya we keep asking the 5-Man Committee to be fair since this is the career of our police officers,” he emphasized.
“We’re asking for objectivity, fairness, and just in evaluating our officers. Let’s set aside na baka nagkaroon ng issue in the past sa members of the committee. Pinag-uusapan dito solely yung involvement sa drugs,” he said.