PNP gets new spokesman amid drug war revamp

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine National Police (PNP) has a new voice.

Chief Superintendent John Bulalacao has been assigned to head the PNP's Public Information Office (PIO) effectively assuming the post of PNP spokesperson, PNP chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa announced to reporters on Tuesday, January 30.

Aside from speaking on behalf of the PNP, Bulalacao will manage press briefings by police top officials like Dela Rosa.

His assignment comes a day after their return to their controversial Oplan Tokhang and a week after new rules were given on anti-illegal drugs operations.

The PNP was generous with details on the new guidelines, aiming to have a less bloody, if not bloodless, war on drugs. (READ: How the 'new' Oplan Tokhang should be done)

Bulalacao replaced Chief Superintendent Dionardo Carlos, the spokesperson of the PNP since August 2016. 

Carlos was re-assigned to head the PNP Aviation Security Group (AVSEGROUP) after its head, Chief Superintendent Sheldon Jacaban reached 56 — the mandatory age of retirement for the uniformed service.

Prior to his assignment in the PNP PIO, Bulalacao headed the Cavite provincial police, the PNP's Firearms and Explosives Office - Management Division, and the Directorial Staff of the Metro Manila Police.

Bulalacao and Carlos are "mistahs"— batchmates from the Philippine Military Academy Maringal class of 1988. –

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.