PNP should not interfere with community pantry, DILG’s Año says

Robie de Guzman   •   April 20, 2021   •   508

 

Community pantry

MANILA, Philippines – Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año on Tuesday said that police and local government executives should not interfere with community pantries and other similar initiatives organized by private groups.

Año issued the statement following reports that some of the community pantry organizers were being red-tagged and profiled by alleged government authorities.

The DILG chief said police and local government interference should only be limited to ensuring that health protocols are being implemented.

“Since this is a purely voluntary and private initiative, we should not interfere except to ensure that minimum health standards are complied with,” Año said.

“Hence, organizers must adhere to existing laws and local ordinances especially those issued to prevent the spread of Covid-19,” he added.

Año also clarified that he did not order the Philippine National Police (PNP) to look into the community pantries around the country.

“The community pantry has been a traditional practice in our country as part of Bayanihan culture and spirit specially in the times of calamities and disasters,” he said.

“In the spirit of Bayanihan, many Filipinos have been doing selfless acts of kindness since last year.

As long as the intention is good and without political color, it should be encouraged and supported,” he added.

As to the issue of whether organizers are required to secure barangay permits, the DILG chief said that organizers should “consult with the concerned barangays if such is required.”

“The PNP and/or local officials may just come in if there is any violation of law, if there are complaints from the community, or if the organizers seek their help,” he said.

“The LGUs, barangays and the PNP are ready to provide utmost assistance to ensure orderly distribution to the public,” he added.

DOJ, DILG crafting guidelines for Duterte order to detain people improperly wearing face masks

Robie de Guzman   •   May 6, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) are crafting guidelines for the latest order of President Rodrigo Duterte to detain those who are improperly wearing face masks in public, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said Thursday.

In a message to reporters, Guevarra said the guidelines will include details on the booking and detention processes, as well as the investigation and the filing of charges against those who will be apprehended.

The DOJ chief, however, stressed that Duterte’s order takes effect immediately even if the guidelines are still being formulated.

“The President’s directive takes effect immediately even without the guidelines. Existing laws and ordinances define the prohibited acts and impose the corresponding penalties therefore, and the relevant rules of court govern the procedure,” Guevarra said.

He also advised the public to wear face masks properly and to follow the law to avoid being detained.

“The best way to avoid being arrested while the guidelines are being formulated is to wear a face mask and obey the law,” he said.

On Wednesday, Duterte ordered the Philippine National Police to impose a stricter mask mandate to stem the spread of COVID-19 that mostly affected urban centers.

Sinas tells police personnel to fully support incoming PNP chief Eleazar

Robie de Guzman   •   May 6, 2021

 

MANILA, Philippines – Outgoing Philippine National Police (PNP) chief General Debold Sinas on Thursday called on the 200,000-strong police force to fully support Police Lieutenant General Guillermo Eleazar who was named as the next top cop.

“I urge you to give my classmate, Police Lieutenant General Guillermo Lorenzo T. Eleazar, the same 100 percent support you gave during the past six months under my watch,” Sinas said in a statement.

“Every Chief PNP appointed to the post carries with him the full trust and confidence of the President of the Republic of the Philippines, therefore, he deserves the unqualified support of all the officers and personnel under his command,” he added.

Sinas is set to retire on May 8 when he reaches the mandatory age of 56. He will formally relinquish the top PNP post to Eleazar in a change of command ceremony in Camp Crame on Friday, May 7.

Sinas stressed the importance of the continuity of command to “sustain the momentum to carry out institutional programs and policies.”

“It has been probably the longest six months tour of duty we have served together to accomplish our mission for the Filipino people,” he said.

“And I honestly believe we have been able to deliver more than what we promised to the President and the Filipino people, because everyone stood by me, from the ranking officers in the headquarters to the last beat patroller in the streets,” he added.

Both Sinas and Eleazar belong to the PMA “Hinirang” Class of 1987.

Eleazar graduated Cum Laude as Top 4 in the order of merit of PMA Class 1987.

He then went on to hold key positions while serving as field-grade officer. He served as chief of police of San Pedro, Laguna; provincial officer of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group in Batangas and Laguna; and chief investigator of the Police Anti-Crime and Emergency Response (PACER).

He was also designated as the CIDG regional chief in Central Luzon and Central Visayas, where he “waged a relentless campaign against organized crime groups and other threat groups in these regions.”

He also held various administrative positions in the Directorate for Logistics and Directorate for Comptrollership and later led the PNP Anti-Cybercrime Group and the PNP’s campaign against online sexual exploitation of children, and internet-based fraud and criminal activity.

In 2016, he took the helm of the Quezon City Police District where he launched anti-crime and anti-illegal drug operations that led to the arrest of notorious street criminals and neutralization of drug targets including rogue cops involved in crime.

He also served as PNP Regional Director for CALABARZON and Metro Manila and headed the Joint Task Force COVID Shield as the law enforcement and public safety arm of the Inter-Agency Task Force on Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID).

Prior to his appointment as PNP chief, he also served as deputy chief for Administration and PNP’s second in command.

 

Face mask violators, iimbestigahan muna bago papatawan ng parusa – PNP

Robie de Guzman   •   May 6, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Tiniyak ng Philippine National Police (PNP) na mas hihigpitan nila ang pagpapatupad ng minimum health protocols alinsunod sa utos ni Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte na hulihin ang mga hindi sumusunod sa patakaran ng pagsusuot ng face mask sa gitna ng pandemya.

Noong Miyerkules ng gabi, sinabi ng pangulo na ang pag-aresto sa mga lumalabag sa health protocols ang nakikita niyang paraan upang sumunod ang publiko sa mga polisiya upang maiwasan ang lalo pang pagkalat ng COVID-19 sa bansa.

Ayon kay PNP spokesperson Brigadier General Ronaldo Olay, magiging maingat sila sa panghuhuli ng face mask violator bunsod na rin ng mga nagdaang insidente kung saan may nasawing protocol violator.

Aniya, ang mga aarestuhing indibiduwal ay kailangang dalhin sa istasyon ng pulisya at i-record ang naging paglabag nito upang malaman ang parusang ipapataw batay sa ordinansa ng nakasasakop na lokal na pamahalaan.

“May mga graduated punishment yan, unang pagkakasita puwedeng warning. Pangalawa ay fine merong panikit ang LGU, titiketan ka at magbabayad ka ng multa at pwede din yung pangatlo yung community service. Halimbawa maglinis ka, magwalis o magtapon ng basura,” ang wika ni Olay.

Iimbestigahan rin ang mga violator upang malaman kung may iba pa silang kinakaharap na kaso.

“Kung yung taong nasita ay may pending warrant ay ide-detain siya. Kung may violation naman na kailangang i-inquest ay i-inquest siya kagaya ng disobedience to person in authority o direct assault,” ani Olay.

Dati nang ipinag-utos ni outgoing PNP chief Police General Debold Sinas sa mga pulis na bigyan lamang ng babala at huwag nang arestuhin ang mga lumalabag sa health protocols kasunod ng pagkamatay ng isang indibidwal matapos umanong parusahan sa pamamagitan ng exercise dahil sa paglabag sa curfew. – RRD (mula sa ulat ni Correspondent Lea Ylagan)

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