THE POLICE ARE ON THEIR OWN

By: Ador Vincent S. Mayol, Nestle L. Semilla July 16,2016 - 12:04 AM

Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña is, in effect, withdrawing the city’s support to the Cebu City Police Office and the newly appointed police officers.

Not only is the mayor washing his hands of involvement in the fight against illegal drugs and criminality and leaving this in the hands of the police, he is not inclined to release the 15 patrol cars and 3 vans earlier requested by former City Director Benjamin Santos.

The newly appointed police officers will also not be receiving allowances from the city, unlike their predecessors. These officials hold the rank of Police Inspector up to Senior Superintendent.


Allowances

During his press conference, the mayor said he will not give the newly appointed city police director, Senior Supt. Joel Doria the P8,000 monthly allowance provided by the city to its police chief.

Ang mga bag-o who will coming here, no. New policemen who were transferred to Cebu City, no. And that includes the chief of police. No. Sila na magboot sa Manila. Di ba? Hahaha (Let Manila decide),” Osmeña said.

However, the remaining policemen still assigned in Cebu City will continue to receive their allowances. The mayor, however, said the allowances of the officers might be reduced.

The city police director gets P8,000 per month from the city government. Two assistant CCPO directors get P7,000 each. Officers with the rank of Police Inspector, Senior Inspector and Chief Inspector get P6,000 per month while policemen and non-uniformed personnel get P4,000 monthly.

The 2016 budget of the Cebu City government carries an appropriation of P61.8 million for 1,288 policemen including non-uniformed personnel (NUP), P4.9 million for 69 Inspectors, Senior Inspectors and Chief Inspectors and P264,000 for the police director and two assistant directors for the whole year.

Vehicles

The mayor said he will not cut off the gasoline that the city provides for the police vehicles.

But he said it is also time that the police and the national government start getting their own supply of gasoline.

Alkansi gyud ta. (We’re at the short end of the stick.) I’m thinking of putting some vehicles for CCTO (Cebu City Transportation Office) and some other purposes. But not all. I mean, let them worry about their own problems. Me, I have enough of that already. Mag rest muna ako. I don’t like to think about it because it’s really very stressful. You know you spend so much time, effort, focus, you like to build them a castle and then suddenly they say “okay change everything” so of course you get suya (resentful),” he said.

He said the police are no longer the priority for vehicle allocation. He clarified that he is not getting the vehicles intended for the police just to spite Camp Crame officials but rather because he also needs them for other departments and concerns.

“I’ll get it because I want to get even with Camp Crame? No. I’m going to focus on what other needs there are. If some need vehicles or gasoline, I’ll shift. But I’m not going to cut it off. I’m not taking anything but as far as police is concerned, it’s another world already,” he said.

The mayor is also having second thoughts about releasing the 15 patrol cars and 3 vans earlier requested by the former Cebu City police chief.

“I don’t know. Like I said, it’s not my priority. Nothing is my priority as far as the police is concerned. I don’t intend to disturb anything but it’s not my priority,” he said.

When before, the police was accorded highest priority, today, it is not even in the “look-into” priority status, Osmeña said.

“This? This is no priority at all. You can see my paperwork. The last thing I want to think about is the police,” Tomas added.

Text messages

The mayor also said he will not do anything about the text messages sent by Cebuanos to his hotline number, giving him information about illegal drug activities.

“I won’t have anything to do with it. Let them start their own. I quit being part of all of those things,” he said.

“I don’t like to start all of these things all over again and then one day they say “okay we will change all over again.” You know, it’s really hard to work with that kind of suspicion. Because these people (Gen. Patrocinio Comendador and Santos) were the best I have worked with,” he said.

But Osmeña said he may reconsider his position if the police will perform well and keep the momentum of the city’s efforts in the anti-drug campaign.

“Anything’s possible. Why not. I’m just simply saying you know, that right now, I’m just weary. I just don’t have the energy to sustain this,” he said.

For now, the mayor’s focus is on solving traffic and garbage problems, prioritizing medical services and budget pruning.

“I will be making an indulgence to shift and put my energy to other things where I will be appreciated. I’m not appreciated here, we’re not appreciated at all. That’s very clear,” he said.

Yesterday, the mayor gave his last cash reward to the Mambaling Police Station whose operatives were responsible for the killing of two alleged level 2 drug pushers last Monday.

He said the P100,000 he gave to the Mambaling police was the last such incentive.

“But it’s (the cash incentive) really an assurance to the police that at least there is something there. When you put your life on the line, it’s bad enough that you will get yourself shot. Worse if you shoot somebody and he dies, you will be under investigation,” he said.

Turnover

At the turnover of command ceremonies yesterday, Police Chief Superintendent Noli Taliño challenged the newly appointed police directors to do their best or be relieved within three months.

“The new commanders are just OICs (officer in charge) or in acting capacity. If they don’t perform well within three months, I’ll relieve them from their positions,” he said in an interview.

In his speech, Taliño encouraged the new directors to remain focused and to carry out their mission to truly serve and protect the people.

“Everyday we see a lot of changes in front of us, and this has become a welcome development not only to the PNP organization but to our country as a whole. We cannot move forward if we don’t make these changes that will somehow alter the usual road that we used to tread. As President Rodrigo Duterte said ’change is coming,’” he said.

“Show your men the brand of leadership that is consistent with our mandate. As a famous writer said, ‘We cannot become what we need to be by remaining what we are.’ Hence, change will certainly lead us to the ultimate goal set by our national leadership,” he added.

Taliño said the new police directors should make sure to bring their subordinates to a degree of distinction that is “not feared but respected and trusted by the people.”

Senior Supt. Joel Doria, former chief of the Pasay City police, was appointed new director of the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO), while Senior Supt. Jose Macanas, former head of the Highway Patrol Group in Central Visayas, was named new Cebu Provincial Police Office director (CPPO).

Senior Supt. Roberto Alanas of the San Juan Police is the new director of the Mandaue City Police Office (MCPO) while Senior Supt. Romel Cabagnot, former provincial director of Samar, is the new head of the Lapu-Lapu Police Office (LCPO).

Senior Supt. Felipe Natividad on Wednesday assumed his post as the new director of the Bohol Provincial Police Office (BPPO).

Taliño said chiefs of the local government units need not worry about the change of police directors as they will continue the fight against all forms of crime, especially illegal drugs.

“I assure the LGUs that we have a more vigorous and intense momentum in our fight against all forms of criminality. We will continue to support your efforts in this endeavors as we have a common objective of attaining genuine peace and order in our region,” he said.

Taliño believes that the police officers are now more confident to do their jobs because of the support of the PNP and the president.
He also urged the public to help the police maintain peace and order as well as in their fight against illegal drugs.

“Be our prayer warriors. Pray for our victory. We believe that with your support, we can win this fight. Rest assured that your police force in Central Visayas will be here 24/7 in ensuring that you’re safe in your respective homes and establishments,” he said.

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TAGS: CCPO, Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña, Cebu City Police Office, Cebu City Transportation Office, Cebu Transportation Office, criminality, illegal drugs, Mayor Osmeña, Mayor Tommy Osmena, Noli Taliño, prohibited drugs, Tomas Osmeña, Tommy Osmeña

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