A LAWMAKER has assured members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) that Congress remains their “strong ally” so long as they do not commit any wrongdoing in performing their sworn duty of shielding the public from crime.
Bicol Saro Party-list Rep. Brian Raymund Yamsuan, a former assistant secretary of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), emphasized the importance of a “whole-of-government” approach for the PNP to better serve and protect the people.
“Kami ay nandito sa Kongreso hindi bilang kritiko niyo, kami ay kakampi ninyo sa mga programa na gusto ninyong palawigin diyan sa Philippine National Police. Kung may kailangan kayo at kailangan na pag-usapan natin, lumapit lang po kayo sa amin. Kakampi niyo po kami,” Yamsuan said.
“Hindi niyo po kami kalaban dito,” he told PNP officers who were present during the hearing conducted by the House Committee on Public Order and Safety on April 27, 2023.
Yamsuan, however, also reminded the PNP officers that they cannot expect lawmakers to support them if they violate the law.
The hearing chaired by Santa Rosa City Rep. Dan Fernandez continued the panel’s probe into the alleged illegal drug buy-bust operations supposedly committed by members of the PNP Regional Police Drug Enforcement Unit (RPDEU)-4A in Antipolo City, Rizal.
“It really breaks my heart to see the PNP’s situation right now, and I think it’s best for us, as part of the government, as public servants, to really help our Philippine National Police achieve its goal and be the real protector of our community,” Yamsuan said, after listening to the allegations against some members of the PNP.
Yamsuan recalled that during his stint at the DILG, under the leadership of then-Secretary Ronaldo Puno strived to maintain and heighten the people’s trust in the PNP.
During the April 27 hearing, several witnesses testified to the alleged illegal activities committed by some members of the RPDEU-4A, which covers the provinces of Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, and Quezon.
The committee’s investigation stemmed from House Resolution 776 filed by Antipolo 2nd District Rep. Romeo Acop, a retired police general, who received several complaints about cases of alleged abductions and irregular buy-bust operations by police officers in Antipolo.
Fernandez said the panel will continue to work towards improving the police force and the communities they serve.