Can the PNP still be trusted? 'Remember Zamboanga'
MANILA, Philippines – He was one of the police generals who led government troops’ defense of Zamboanga City in September 2013.
One year later, Police Director Carmelo Valmoria leads another war – against wayward cops who are the alleged principals behind high-profile crimes.
At least 9 cops – with ranks from Chief Inspector to Police Officer 2 – are suspects in an EDSA robbery and kidnapping incident that went viral on Twitter. Another suspect is a dismissed police officer.
So in appealing to the public not to lose confidence in the Philippine National Police (PNP), Valmoria asked them to remember Zamboanga.
“Noong September 9, one year anniversary ng Zamboanga seige. Tingnan 'nyo naman 'yung mga kapulisan niyo at Armed Forces of the Philippines… [kung wala sila] siguro yung buong Zamboanga sunog na yun,” he told reporters at Camp Crame on Wednesday, September 10.
(September 9 was the one year anniversary of the Zamboanga siege. Remember what the police and the military did. If not for them, Zamboanga may have been razed to the ground.)
“Tingnan naman natin, iilan lang ito. Huwag naman tayo mag-generalize,” he added. (Let’s look at the bigger picture. This case only involves a few. Let’s not generalize.)
A year ago, Moro National Liberation Front rebels attacked the city with the aim of declaring independence. For over two weeks, MNLF rebels and government forces slugged it out. At least 10,000 houses were left damaged or razed and around 120,000 fled their homes.
Valmoria was then the commander of the PNP’s Special Action Force (SAF).
Zooming back in on his current role as chief of the NCRPO, Valmoria said they were “not discouraged.” “Tuloy-tuloy ang serbisyo namin sa mamayanan,” he said. (Our service will continue.)
The cops allegedly stopped an SUV along EDSA in Mandaluyong City then brought the two passengers to the La Loma police station. After detaining them for over 7 hours, the two victims were released and their vehicle, returned. Police, however, were allegedly able to get over P2 million in cash meant for a business deal and more than P100,000 in ATM withdrawals.
Of the 10 suspects, only 3 have surrendered. The two are Chief Inspector Joseph de Vera and Police Officer 2 (PO2) Jonathan Rodriguez from the La Loma police station and the third, Senior Inspector Allan Emiano from Caloocan City.
Two of the suspects in the case – Senior Police Officer 1 Rameil Hachero and Police Officer 2 Jonathan Rodriguez – were relieved in 2011 after a case was filed against them for a similar "modus" in 2011.
The 2011 case is still pending before the National Police Commission.
Valmoria said the NCRPO would also check how the two were reassigned despite their relief. – Rappler.com