Agusan del Norte Rep. Lawrence Fortun said General Oscar Albayalde has no choice but to relinquish his position as chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP) in order to pave the way for a speedy and impartial investigation.

Albayalde’s resignation to pave way for probe on drug recycling scandal — Fortun

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Agusan del Norte Rep. Lawrence Fortun said General Oscar Albayalde has no choice but to relinquish his position as chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP) in order to pave the way for a speedy and impartial investigation.

Fortun on Monday welcomed Albayade’s decision to step down from his position after he went on non-duty status amid drug recycling allegations when he was still the chief of the Pampanga police back in 2013.

Fortun said while Albayalde may be presumed innocent until proven otherwise, “his continued stay as PNP chief will not do the whole institution any good.”

“He has to relinquish such powerful and influential position in order to pave the way for a speedy and impartial investigation on these extremely disturbing issues hounding the PNP,” said Fortun.

Fortun stressed that Albayalde’s continued stay as head of the PNP “will only hamper the effective functioning and operations of such a huge organization whose complex concerns require his undivided attention.”

“The PNP has to be spared from further public contempt. As the country’s primary law enforcement agency, its integrity has to be protected and preserved,” said Fortun.

The Agusan solon said having a top cop that’s facing criminal allegations “will not, in any way, be helpful to the organization.”

“Gen. Albayalde can now devote more of his time and energy in defending himself from all these scandals allegedly involving him,” he added.

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POLITIKO / Across the Nation

POLITIKO / Latest News

Sotto salutes Bernas for ‘life of service, devotion to God, rule of law’

The Senate on Monday adopted a resolution expressing its profound sympathy and sincere condolences on the demise of constitutionalist Fr. Joaquin Bernas, SJ, who passed away last Saturday at the age of 88.

Senate Resolution 674, introduced by Senate President Tito Sotto, was unanimously adopted by the chamber, which honored Bernas for his “immeasurable and invaluable contributions to the legal profession and society.”

The Jesuit priest was a notable constitutionalist and one of the framers of the 1987 Constitution.

“We salute you for a life of service and devotion to God, the Rule of Law and your countrymen, Fr. Joaquin Bernas,” Sotto said in his sponsorship speech.

He described Bernas as a man with a “strong sense of morals and ethics who was humble and calm, exuding authority even in his silence.”

Sotto said the Jesuit priest had willingly responded to the call of legal and moral duty to protect democracy and human rights unmindful of his own physical well-being.

He said Bernas’ unblemished devotion and faith in God and the Rule of Law had helped rebuild the country through his teachings, writings, and leadership.

“His death is great a loss not only to his Atenean family and to the legal profession but to the Filipino people and the nation as well,” Sotto said.

Senate celebrates women’s contributions in battle against Covid-19

The Senate on Monday, International Women’s Day, adopted a resolution to commemorate the occasion and the role of women in nation building and to celebrate women’s indispensable contributions to the Filipino home and in the workforce, particularly in the battle against the Covid-19 pandemic.

Senate Resolution 673, sponsored by Senator Joel Villanueva, stressed that this year’s celebration of International Women’s Day with the theme “Women in leadership: Achieving an equal future in a Covid-19 world,” celebrates the tremendous efforts by women and girls around the world in shaping a more equal future and recovery from the pandemic.

“While recognizing that across the world women are facing increased domestic violence, unpaid care duties, unemployment and poverty, and despite women making up a majority of front-line workers, there is disproportionate and inadequate representation of women in national and global COVID-19 policy spaces,” the resolution read in part.

Also according to the resolution, “In order to uphold women’s rights and fully leverage the potential of women’s leadership in pandemic preparedness and response, this year’s celebration also recognizes that the perspectives of women and girls in all of their diversity must be integrated in the formulation and implementation of policies and programmes in all spheres and at all stages of pandemic response and recovery.”

The resolution also cited that “the Philippines has always recognized the role of women in nation-building and the need to ensure the fundamental equality before the law of women and men, as enshrined in Article II, Section 14 of the Constitution.”

“Pursuant to this state policy, Republic Act 9710, or the Magna Carta for Women, tasked the Philippine Commission on Women to act as a catalyst for gender mainstreaming, as well as the authority on women’s concerns and lead advocate of women’s empowerment, gender equity, and gender equality,” the resolution said.

Senate unanimously okays BFP modernization bill

The Senate on Monday unanimously approved on final reading a bill to modernize and strengthen the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) by providing modern firefighting tools and life-saving equipment, additional personnel and relevant training of personnel.

With a 23-0 vote, the Senate passed Senate Bill 1832, or the proposed BFP Modernization Act, aimed at helping the BFP pursue its mandate of ‘promoting public safety by saving lives and protecting property in times of emergencies’.

Senator Bato Dela Rosa, chairman of the Senate public order committee, said that the proposed measure will ensure that the BFP will be well-quipped and sufficiently manned to suppress fire and respond to calamities.

“We will not allow the BFP to prevent and suppress destructive fires alone. Sa tulong ng Senate Bill 1832, masisiguro natin na magkakaroon ng sapat na fire officers, fire trucks, personal protective equipment at ibang equipment na kailangan para maapula ang mga nakamamatay na sunog,” he said.

“Bukod pa rito, mas magagampanan ng BFP ang kanilang tungkuling bilang “first responder” sa mga sakuna, aksidente at iba pang emergency,” Dela Rosa said.

The bill expands the BFP’s functions to include prevention and suppression of fire in all buildings, houses, and other structures located inside economic zones, agro-industrial economic zones, free ports, and special economic zones and other similar places.



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