by Rene V. Carbayas
ISABELA CITY, Basilan Mar 8 (PIA) – The police in Basilan asked the media to help them promote a positive image of the police, with the public’s branding of police deployed in Basilan from Luzon as ‘scalawags.’
Basilan Police Superintendent Edwin Romero, deputy provincial director for operations, said that they would prefer to call them as “Brave54” (now 58) since out of 200 police from Luzon who were ordered to a mission in Basilan, they were the only ones who responded to the direct order from the President.
Romero admitted that the local police is at low morale, but confident that the image could change with the help of the local media.
Speaking before the provincial advisory council (PAC) meeting last Feb 23, held at Upper Manggas, Lantawan town in Basilan, Romero said that the scalawag tag is unfair to most of the police deployed to Basilan as they are not directly implicated in the illegal trade.
He also asked the members of the PAC to help them change this negative image by providing the police guidance and recommendations as to how to improve their services to the public.
In an interview, Police Superintendent Christopher W. Panapan, deputy provincial director for administration said that the PNP is implementing its reform agenda with P.A.T.R.O.L. 2030 or the Peace and Order Agenda for Transformation and upholding of the Rule Of Law. He said that this is part of the integrated transformation program of the entire national police in the country.
“This is the equivalent of the military’s IPSP Bayanihan Program. By 2030, the PNP envisions to be a highly capable, effective and credible police service, that works in partnership with a responsive community towards the attainment of a safer place to live, work, and do business,” he said.
Meanwhile, PAC Chairman Lantawan Vice Mayor Nasser A. Abubakar expressed his full support to the local police. He said that the council will do its role in providing all the needed support of the local police.
Moreover, the local police of Lantawan revealed the intensive implementation of the national government’s campaign against illegal gambling.
Police Inspector Henry S. Gonzales, OIC chief of police of Lantawan said that they are tightly monitoring the illegal drug personalities who surrendered. They are now also focused on the directive of President Rodrigo Duterte to eradicate illegal gambling in the locality. (ALT/RVC/PIA9-Basilan)