Albayalde backs return of old police ranks

By: Inquirer.net April 02,2018 - 10:55 AM

UNIFIED FORCE The adoption of military ranks for policemen is expected to “promote a common understanding” with the AFP. / Inquirer.net

Bringing back the old rank classification of the Philippine National Police, making it the same as that of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, will stop the confusion between the two groups, according to the Metro Manila police chief.

This was the reason cited by Director Oscar Albayalde, National Capital Region Police Office chief, for his support for House Bill No. 5236 which was approved on second reading on March 25.

“We [have been] asking Congress for a long time to [bring] back our old ranks,” Albayalde said recently. “Up until now, people are still confused [about] what police ranks mean.”

He cited incidents in which police superintendents (equivalent to lieutenant colonels in AFP) were mistaken for school superintendents.

On the other hand, police officers who introduced themselves as inspectors (a 1st or 2nd lieutenant in the military) were believed to be bus inspectors.

President’s approval

According to Albayalde, President Rodrigo Duterte has also expressed support for the return of the old police ranks.

Under House Bill 5236 authored by Antipolo Rep. Romeo Acop, the ranks of PNP commissioned and noncommissioned officers would be modified to follow that of their military counterpart but with the word “police” before these.

In Albayalde’s case, for example, from Director (two-star PNP General), he would become a police Major General. On the other hand, PNP chief Director General (four-star PNP General) Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa would be known as a police General.

Acop, a former police official, said in his bill that “despite the usage of [the new police ranks], the public seems to have been accustomed to the use of rank classification using military terminologies.”

The adoption of military ranks for policemen would “promote a common understanding between and among members of the AFP and PNP, and enhance their efficiency in interagency operations,” he added.

Amendment to R.A. 6975

Acop’s bill seeks to amend Section 28 of Republic Act No. 6975, or the law establishing the PNP under a reorganized Department of the Interior and Local Government.

Signed into law on Dec. 13, 1990, R.A. 6975 took effect on Jan. 1, 1991 with the PNP becoming operational 28 days later. Its members consisted of former Philippine Constabulary-Integrated National Police personnel and selected officers from major AFP service units.

Under Sections 28 and 29 of RA 6975, the PNP adopted a different structure of rank classifications “for purposes of attaining a more efficient administration, supervision, and control.”

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TAGS: Albayalde, backs, old, police, ranks, return

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