By Billy Begas
Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief General Benjamin Acorda Jr. said fewer police officers were involved in crimes this year compared to 2022.
This was disclosed by Acorda during the deliberation of the proposed budget of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) for 2024.
ACT Teachers Rep. France Castro expressed her concern over the recent killings involving police officers.
“Nakakabahala…. yung sunod-sunod na patayan, mga bata, ng mga PNP, talagang worrisome lalung-lalo na yung mga bata na napapatay, at tsaka yung mga police brutality so may nabago na po ba doon sa manual ng PNP at paano po natin nadidisiplina yung ating mga nasa PNP…. at may naisip na po bang gawin ang DILG kaugnay nito,” Castro said.
DILG Secretary Benhur Abalos said the Internal Affairs Service (IAS) of the PNP, the Military and Other Law Enforcement Office (MOLEO) under the Ombudsman, and the National Police Commission (Napolcom) have the authority to take action against police officers who have committed crimes.
“Pero ang maganda po sa pinag-usapan namin ni Chief kamukha ho nung nangyari sa Navotas…. automatic lahat ng involve tanggal kaagad suspendido kaagad yan pending investigation. ….. Yung nangyari nga po sa Navotas pinakulong agad natin hindi lang tinanggal, nasa kulungan kaagad to serve an example,” said Abalos referring to the teenager who was shot and killed by cops by mistake.
Acorda said the PNP has been facilitating seminars for its members in an effort to reduce, if not eliminate human rights violations committed by policemen.
“Talagang nagkataon lang po na sunod-sunod, but in its totality, if my premise is correct, if we are going to compare police officers who were meted penalties for the previous year, almost 2,500 po and for this year, for the same period, mga almost 1,400 bumaba po ng 85%,” Acorda said.
“Going back, if my premise is correct, malayo pong mas kokonti po ang pulis na gumagawa ng kalokohan,” he added.
Acorda also assured members of the House Committee on Appropriations that the PNP is “hindi po natutulog sa mga ganitong wrongdoings, we are doing our best na talagang to cleanse our ranks.”
The PNP chief also underscored the importance of gaining the trust of the public.
Castro said she is not satisfied with what the PNP is doing right now.
“Siguro itong mga pag-aaral, itong pagbabago ng PNP manual, pero tingin ko not enough yung effort ng PNP,” Castro said.
“Bakit kating-kati ba ang PNP o mga pulis doon sa kanilang mga baril …. Bakit pinapatay agad….. Igalang nyo naman yung human rights ng mga tao, yung life, yung right to life lalong lalo na nung ating mga kabataan.”
Abalos assured Castro that justice will be served. “Nangyayari po ito but we assure you na lahat po ito ay talagang…. May hustisya po rito.”