Mass relief of RSOG , RAIDSOTF operatives
All the operatives of two special police units responsible for neutralizing the top three alleged drug operators were relieved en masse by Police Regional Director, Chief Supt. Noli Taliño.
The police director announced on Tuesday the transfer of all 67 operatives of the Regional Anti-Illegal Drugs Special Operations Task Force (RAIDSOTF) and the Regional Special Operations Group (RSOG), saying they need to try other police units.
He said rotation of assignments is part of the changes he wants to implement but also hinted his dissatisfaction over the performances of the operatives who killed two prominent drug personalities only a month before President Rodrigo Duterte assumed office.
Both the RSOG and RAIDSOTF heads and operatives also face accusations of a rubout in killing suspected drug lords Rowen “Yawa” Secretaria on Banacon Island in Bohol last May 28, and Jeffrey “Jaguar” Diaz in Las Pinas City last June 17.
“I’m not saying these operatives are involved in illegal drugs. But perhaps, they need to try other police units. If they are really good policemen, then wherever they will be assigned, they will do their jobs well,” said the former Special Action Force chief, who assumed as PRO-7 chief last July 4.
Taliño said they will soon fill up the void left by the RAIDSOFT and RSOG operatives.
For the time being, the PRO-7 has created teams to conduct special operations against illegal drugs. He did not elaborate.
“Our policemen have to be well-rounded. They can’t stay in one unit forever because they might be too familiar with the system and it won’t be good for them,” Taliño explained.
The two special police units were the recipient of reward money from Mayor Tomas Osmeña in the total amount of P255,000 for neutralizing suspected drug lords Secretaria and Diaz and their alleged cohorts.
Despite several attempts at contacting him on his cell phone, Osmeña could not be reached for comment.
The relieved operatives are currently undergoing refresher courses to reorient themselves with the “basics” of police work.
The five-day Balik Eskwela program started yesterday and will last for a week.
After the program, the operatives will be evaluated by a committee headed by Senior Supt. Rey Lyndon Lawas, deputy regional director for operations.
Taliño said it is possible that the relieved members of the RSOG and the RAIDSOTF would be assigned to the different police stations in the region.
“We need to rotate our men. Anyway, there are other policemen who can take over the two special police units (RSOG and RAIDSOTF),” he said.
Also to undergo the Balik Eskwela Program and perhaps face relief in the coming days are the anti-illegal drug operatives in the cities and municipalities of Central Visayas, Taliño said.
“It all depends on the evaluation that will be conducted. But if you don’t perform well, expect to be relieved from your posts,” he said.
He said he was informed about an existing list of police officers in the region who are involved in illegal drugs.
Taliño said he has yet to go over the list, which is now with ranking police officials at Camp Crame.
“I can’t say how many. But there are policemen who are involved in illegal drug operations here. And this is my warning to them: Stop!” he said.
Senior Supt. Lawas earlier said police operatives may need to relearn and unlearn some things to better prepare themselves for the intensified campaign against illegal drugs.
The refresher courses, he said, is similar to what “low performers” in the Philippine National Police undergo to reorient and improve themselves.
Among the subjects to be discussed in the five-day training is spirituality, human rights, core values and culture of police service, police intervention techniques, and standard operating procedures.
Lawas, who was appointed head of the Performance Evaluation Team or the Oversight Committee, said they have identified 111 of the 126 police station chiefs in Central Visayas who failed to arrest half of the number of drug personalities in their watch list since February 2016.
They were given until last Sunday to improve their performances.
As of Monday, Lawas said at least 50 police stations have convinced drug users and pushers to surrender although they still failed to arrest 50 percent of their targets.
Taliño on Monday reshuffled five senior officers holding key posts in the region.
He also ordered the relief of seven policemen who were found positive of illegal drugs.
The seven cops are currently assigned to the the Regional Holding and Administrative Unit pending an administrative investigation.
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