THE Philippine National Police (PNP) will pursue its deal with the United States to purchase 26,000 assault rifles which President Rodrigo Duterte earlier ordered scrapped.
PNP chief Director General Ronald ‘Bato’ Dela Rosa said the President allowed the police to proceed with the procurement of the firearms when told that the US government did not stop the arms sale.
“Actually I talked to him personally during our trip to Malaysia about that issue. We reported to him that the processing of documents is going on smoothly. According to Sig Sauer, there was no obstacle to the deal,” Dela Rosa said in a news briefing in Camp Crame Monday.
Duterte ordered the deal cancelled following reports that the US State department halted the planned sale of rifles after Sen. Ben Cardin said he will oppose the contract because of human rights concerns in the Philippines.
But Sig Sauer, in a letter to the PNP, said their application with the US State Department was being processed as normal.
“When I explained that to him, sabi niya (he said) OK you continue. Ipagpatuloy n’yo yan kasi wala naman palang hinarang (Get on with the deal since there is no obstacle),” Dela Rosa said in the press briefing.