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'Childish' Marikina mayor slammed for withholding funds for police

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED) – Marikina Mayor Marcelino Teodoro was slammed by the Philippine National Police (PNP) for withholding funds intended for local police only because he was not told the city's former top cop was being promoted and assigned to another post. Teodoro faces possible administrative cases.

In a text message to Rappler on Tuesday, April 23, Marikina police chief-in-charge Colonel Red Maranan said Teodoro "withdrew the gas allocation support, repair and maintenance support" for their policemen ever since he assumed his post in March.

Maranan added that the gas funds were supposed to keep around 20 mobile patrol cars running, but that they have not received any for the past few weeks. Funds were also allegedly withheld for cops' tickets for traffic and ordinance violations.

"The first time that we spoke, he asked why I was installed without his approval. I told him, it's because nalipat si Colonel [Roger] Quesada. (Colonel Quesada was transferred.) The PNP has put an officer to continue the management functions of the police station especially during election period. Sooner, he can choose an officer from 3 names that PNP will submit," Maranan said.

"I've been trying to set an appointment," Maranan added, but Teodoro supposedly has not replied to him.

Mayor denies police claims: Teodoro, however, denied the claims of the cops.

"We have not withdrawn anything," Teodoro told reporters in a phone interview.

According to the mayor, he recently found out that cops have been receiving budget from the national police headquarters to cover for gas. He had asked them to recompute how much they needed from the local government.

Teodoro said he pitched for the Marikina local government to pay half of the police's fuel expenses.

"Mayroong gasoline allowance. Ang sabi ko sa kanila, i-compute magkano ang nakukuha sa PNP (They have gasoline allowance. I told them to compute how much they receive from the PNP)," Teodoro said.

"'Yang dapat ginawa ni Chief PNP o kaya ni RD Eleazar ay at least tinawagan ako to confirm kung totoo 'yung information nila (What Chief PNP and RD Eleazar should have done is at least call me to confirm if the information they got was true)," he also said.

What should have been done? Under Republic Act 6975, mayors have the authority "to choose the chief of police from a list of five (5) eligibles." This list should be prepared by the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO).

But because the previous police chief Colonel Quesada was set to be promoted, PNP chief Oscar Albayalde said they placed Maranan temporarily to keep operations going. 

They would have asked the mayor to choose from a list they were preparing, but because of the alleged retaliation, they are now going to ask the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) to intervene.

Without naming the mayor in his briefing on Tuesday, Albayalde said he has asked Metro Manila police chief Director Guillermo Eleazar to "make a report" for DILG Secretary Eduardo Año to ask Teodoro to "explain" or "show cause" for his alleged actions.

"Hindi mo puwedeng basta-basta tanggalin 'yung supporta because that is in the Local Government Code especially so if it's part of peace and order (You can't just remove support, because it's in the Local Government Code and especially it's also part of peace and order)," Albayalde said.

Teodoro is seeking reelection for his second term as Marikina mayor in the 2019 elections. – Rappler.com

Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers security, crime, and the city of Manila for Rappler. He was chosen as a Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs.

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