Palace on Purisima: Don’t prejudge him

Natashya Gutierrez
Palace on Purisima: Don’t prejudge him
Malacañang confirms the meeting between President Benigno Aquino III and PNP Chief Director General Alan Purisima on Monday night, September 29 – on the eve of a Senate hearing the top cop was to attend

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang on Tuesday, September 29, continued to defend Philippine National Police Chief Alan Purisima, saying it’s not right to pre-judge him based only on allegations of incompetence and corruption.

Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr came to Purisima’s defense on the same day that the PNP chief was being grilled at a hearing on proposed PNP reform and reorganization bills conducted by the Senate committee on public order and dangerous drugs. (READ: PNP chief: We won’t let the corrupt in)

Responding to questions, Coloma also confirmed the meeting between Purisima and President Benigno Aquino III on Monday but admitted he was not aware of what they had discussed. 

Sa ating sistema ng batas meron po tayong sinusunod na mga proseso. Hindi naman yata makatwiran na humantong sa mga konklusyon na ang resulta ay ‘yung pagkakaroon ng bahid o alinlangan sa integridad o katauhan ng isang public official na nakabatay lamang sa mga paratang,” he said.

(Under our system of laws, we follow certain processes. I don’t think its right to draw conclusions that will result in smearing or casting doubts on the integrity of a public official, based only on allegations).

On whether Purisima’s refusal to quit his post, as urged by some groups, has the support of the President, Coloma said Aquino had already announced his position on   Purisima.

Maliwanag naman po ang deklarasyon ng Pangulo hinggil sa kanyang pananaw sa pagseserbisyo ni PNP Chief Alan Purisima (The declaration of the President about his thoughts on the service of PNP Chief Alan Purisima is clear),” Coloma said.

Earlier, Aquino said he has known Purisima for years and has never known him to be greedy or luxurious. He had also said reforms in the police force were instituted under his leadership.

All eyes are on Purisima who faces at least 3 graft and plunder complaints before the Ombudsman, over alleged anomalous deals, an underdeclared home in Nueva Ecija, and the renovation of the “White House,” the official residence of the PNP chief,  in Camp Crame.

The President has close ties to Purisima, whom he appointed top cop in 2012. Aquino has been accused of protecting Purisima, who also served as aide of the late president Corazon Aquino, mother of the President. As a member of the Presidential Security Group (PSG) then, Purisima was assigned specifically to guard the young Aquino, who would later become president too.

There have been recent calls for his resignation in the wake of high-profile crimes, but Aquino has consistently defended Purisima’s track record as PNP chief. He again defended Purisima last week, saying he would not be surprised if the allegations are merely unfounded attacks. – Rappler.com

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