THE tragedy that befell some concert goers in Pasay City (Metro Manila) has prompted President-elect Rodrigo Duterte to consider implementing a massive revamp at the Philippine National Police (PNP) and National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).
“When I reshuffle, I do not reshuffle officers. Lahat [Everybody], from chief of office down to the janitor,” Duterte, the incumbent mayor of Davao City, said.
He added that police officers deployed in Manila may be transferred to the provinces or vice versa.
“There will be a massive reshuffling so I am putting notice now to everybody. Be ready. Magbalot na kayo [Pack up],” the mayor said.
He expressed dismay over the deaths of five persons at the Close Up Forever Summer concert at the Mall of Asia in Pasay City on Saturday, blaming police for their negligence.
The NBI suspects that drugs may have been the cause of death.
In a news conference in Davao City early morning on Thursday, Duterte said a reported drug dealing in the concert party was a result of failure of intelligence.
“I am addressing myself to the police and law enforcement as a mayor and as a citizen of this republic, karaming tao diyan [there are a lot of people there]. PDEA [Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency], then police community, sali sali na ‘yan sila lahat diyan [they are all together]. There is a national team and there is a local [team]of Pasay, how come nakalusot ang bagay na iyon [how come that incident happened]?” he asked.
“It’s a failure of intelligence. Nasaan ang NBI [Where was the NBI], ang anti-drug nila or whatever that agency is called? Saan ‘yung pulis? Saan ‘yung PDEA? Bakit ganun karami ang namatay [Where is the anti-drug agency? Where is the police and PDEA? Why were there so many deaths]?” Duterte said.
He slammed the authorities for their negligence and questioned the use of the funds allotted to them.
“You are paid to do or to prevent those incidents to happen,” Duterte said.
“I’m at a loss. It was reported that there was one corner of the place where drugs were being distributed, apparently sold and it escaped the attention of the law enforcement authorities. It is unacceptable,” he added.
The PNP also on Thursday said officials are ready to present their intelligence and operations funds for Duterte’s scrutiny.
PNP spokesman Chief Supt. Wilben Mayor said the mayor has the power to scrutinize these funds and how the money was being used by the police force.
Mayor admitted that there is a need for the police to intensify their intelligence gathering, noting that they did not monitor the sale and distribution of illegal drugs at the concert area.
The PNP spokesman said it was not clear if policemen were allowed inside the concert venue.
WITH ANTHONY VARGAS