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Vargas on Albayalde resignation: Congress oversight needed to keep PNP on its toes

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Quezon City Rep. Alfred Vargas on Monday said the sudden resignation of Philippine National Police chief Oscar Albayalde amid a simmering controversy over “ninja cops” showed the urgency of Congress oversight over the executive.

“Amid the current debacle the Philippine National Police faces, one thing is clear: Congress oversight on the executive branch is crucial to keeping the trust of the Filipino in government. Our democratic institutions work,” the actor-politician said.

“On the ground, mahalagang may tiwala ang publiko sa ating Pambansang Pulis dahil sila ang takbuhan ng mga mamamayan lalo na kapag mayroong krimen. Hindi dapat kinakatakutan ng mga taong masunurin sa batas ang mga pulis. Mga kriminal lang dapat ang matakot sa pulis,” Vargas said.

The third-termer congressman said he sees a “need to pass new legislation on whistleblowers, further strengthen the National Police Commission and Peoples Law Enforcement Boards, and put in place audit systems within the PNP and the Department of the Interior and Local Government.”

“There are at least eight whistleblower bills in the House and seven of those are pending before the House committee on justice,” Vargas noted.

“There are also pending bills meant to put in place a new Code on Crimes and update the ways law enforcement agencies conduct criminal investigations. These are important bills providing systemic solutions to the ailments of the PNP and the rest of the criminal justice system,” he explained.

Vargas said: “Kung i-certify as urgent ni President Rodrigo Duterte ang mga bills na iyan, mas mainam; makakaasa ang publiko na kikilos nang mabilis at wasto ang Kongreso.”

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