Tomas not OK to replace mayors with police chiefs

By: Morexette Marie B. Erram June 29,2018 - 11:01 PM

OSMEÑA

IN AREAS WITH HIGH CRIME VOLUME

Although he welcomed past initiatives by President Rodrigo Duterte to curb criminality, Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña expressed reservations on the former’s plan to replace local chief executives with police chiefs if crime rates in their respective areas remain high.

In a press conference yesterday, Osmeña pointed out that high crime rates should not be the basis on giving mayors the boot.

“He’s the president. I’m open to whatever he wants. But I’ll tell you frankly, ever since I became mayor, I wanted the crime volume to go up,” said Osmeña.

He added that high crime rates do not completely reflect the peace and order situation of a city or a town.

“The public perception is that the crime volume is low, then it means there’s no crime. That’s not true. It’s actually the opposite,” Osmeña explained.

“If you’re walking down in Quezon City, and your necklace got snatched, do you bother on reporting to the police? No. So there’s no crime right,? he said.

“The Mobile Patrol Group receives calls of snatchers and thieves from the people. And they will log it, so there’s a crime. If they (people) don’t call, there’s no crime,” Osmeña stressed.

During his visit to Bohol last Thursday, President Duterte said in a speech that he had ordered Interior Officer-in-Charge Secretary Eduardo Año to audit cities and municipalities that continue to post high crime rates and buy-bust operations.

The President said he would fire the mayors, charge them with serious neglect of duty, and put policemen in charge of their jurisdictions.

Cebu province ranked third in a study conducted by Ateneo de Manila University (AdMU) and the De La Salle University (DLSU) with the most number of drug-related killings.

Also during his visit to Cebu City last June 15, Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Director General Oscar Albayalde tagged Cebu province as a “drug hotspot.”

But Osmeña disagreed with Albayalde’s observations, and even planned to disprove the latter by showing a list of CCPO’s successful anti-drug operations.

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