PNP plans recruitment changes to fight corruption

The announcement comes two days after a report by Transparency International showed that Filipinos identify the police as the most corrupt institution

RECRUITMENT REFORMS. Interior Secretary Mar Roxas vows to change the way police are recruited in an attempt to eliminate corruption. File photo by Rappler

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine National Police (PNP) is changing its requirements for those who want to enter the force, in a bid to decrease corruption among its ranks.

Interior Secretary Mar Roxas said on Thursday, July 11, that the National Police Commission (Napolcom) is finalizing the implementing rules for the new procedure, which will be rolled out in the next few weeks.

The announcement came two days after a report by Berlin-based Transparency International showed that Filipinos identify the police as the most corrupt among 12 institutions. This was the same finding in its 2010/2011 survey.

In a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being extremely corrupt, the police got a score of 4.

Roxas said reforms are being instituted, starting at the recruitment level, to change this perception of the police. The survey, he said, was “a big challenge” for the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), the PNP, and Napolcom.

“We consider this as one huge challenge and we will tackle this challenge by using concrete steps, which we are already implementing as early as now. One big step we will do is change the way we choose who will and won’t be a police,” he said.

Currently, Roxas said police applicants are exposed to corruption early on because of the culture in the PNP that requires applicants to find backing from padrinos or sponsors – older police officers – in almost every region before they are able to enter the PNP.

This, despite passing all requirements and exams for entrance.

Roxas said they would eliminate this practice so new recruits can start their police career in a “clean manner.”

He added, the padrino system instills a sense of corruption early on among cops. Because the recruit needs to bribe padrinos in order to even get in, the first thing new police will do is find a way to earn back the money they spent on bribes.

“We will change this, we will renew this. All those qualified, we will enter their names into one lottery drum and everyone has the same chance of getting selected. No need for a padrino or a connection. No need for an insider who will help, no need to bribe and in that way, our PO1s can start their career without having to bribe anyone just to become a police,” he said.


Roxas also reacted to reports on a proposed Executive Order to allow the possible re-entry of Philippine Military Academy (PMA) graduates into the PNP.

Early this week, PMA alumni from Cebu proposed letting PMA graduates join the police force, an old practice that was stopped due to rifts between PMA and Philippine National Police Academy (PNPA) graduates.

Roxas did not reject the idea, even denying the rifts between the two groups.

“In my 6 or 7 months of heading [the DILG] I never felt this rift. The best thing to do is to strengthen the areas of cooperation and make sure orders are clear. In that way, there will be no group division between PMA and PNPA.” – Rappler.com

Add a comment

Sort by

There are no comments yet. Add your comment to start the conversation.