CIDG for Trillanes only, not for Imelda? ‘She’s already old,’ says PNP

Rambo Talabong
CIDG for Trillanes only, not for Imelda? ‘She’s already old,’ says PNP

'Unang-una, we have to take into consideration the age,' says Philippine National Police chief Director General Oscar Albayalde

MANILA, Philippines – When President Rodrigo Duterte ordered the arrest of Senator Antonio Trillanes IV in September, even without a court-issued arrest order, the Philippine National Police (PNP) sent over agents of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) to stand by outside the Senate building.

But when the Sandiganbayan released an arrest order for former first lady and now Ilocos Norte 2nd District Representative Imelda Marcos last Friday, November 9, the PNP did not send any advance team to the House of Representatives.

Why so? According to PNP chief Director General Oscar Albayalde, it’s because the Marcos matriarch is already too old for cops to be monitoring in advance.

“Unang-una, the former first lady is very [old], ‘di naman sa, baka magalit siya, pero may edad na kasi. Unang-una we have to take into consideration the age,” Albayalde said in a briefing at the national headquarters building in Camp Crame on Monday, November 12.

(First and foremost, the former first lady is very old, not that because she might get mad, but she is old. First, we have to take into consideration the age.)

Marcos is 89 years old, while Trillanes is 47.

“Kanya (Trillanes) is just a preemptive measure in case na talagang lumabas [ang arrest warrant]. Ito naman (Imelda) kasi wala tayong nakikitang magiging problema sa kanya dahil unang-una may edad na, babae,” Albayalde said.

(For Trillanes, it was just a preemptive measure in case that an arrest warrant really comes out. For Marcos, we are not seeing any possible problems because, first of all, she is old, and a woman.)

Other important differences: The differences in the cases of Marcos and Trillanes go beyond age. (READ: Imelda saga: Will she go to jail or not?)

After years of hearings, the anti-graft court on November 9 found Mrs Marcos guilty of 7 counts of graft, while Trillanes is facing abruptly revived coup d’etat and rebellion charges after Duterte stripped him of his amnesty.

When the PNP sent CIDG agents to Trillanes’ office, his cases had not even been reactivated by the courts for any warrant.

The two also have different political standings. While Marcos and her family are close allies of Duterte, Trillanes is one of the President’s staunchest critics.

Albayalde stressed that the advance police party they sent over for Trillanes was not intended to harass him, contrary to what Trillanes has been accusing them of. –

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Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers the House of Representatives and local governments for Rappler. Prior to this, he covered security and crime. He was named Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs. In 2021, he was selected as a journalism fellow by the Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics.