Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Alan Purisima did not show up at a hearing by the Senate Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs that was called by Sen. Grace Poe to discuss various issues hounding the police force.
The committee wanted Purisima to discuss the peace and order situation in the country and to update the Senate on what the PNP is doing to address criminality.
“We wanted to hear directly from chief Alan Purisima. We were expecting him at least to
give us a plan on where the PNP is heading in light of the current crime situation in our country and to defend the institution and the majority of police officers who are doing their jobs,” Poe, who heads the panel, said.
Purisima sent a representative, Supt. Alexander Ignacio, who admitted that he had no idea on the whereabouts of his boss.
“I don’t know his schedule, madam. As I said, I am concerned about the strategic plans of the PNP. But surely I will convey your dismay and concerns and will coordinate with your staff so that we can schedule a visit session with our big boss,” Ignacio told Poe.
The senator noted that the PNP chief was relying on a representative to speak for him on issues that have been hounding the PNP instead of acting as a leader and standing up for the organization.
Poe said there is no reason for Purisima to evade the Senate since even President Benigno Aquino 3rd answers issues raised against him.
She had set the hearing to learn more about the PNP’s modernization program and
reorganization and get an update on the crime spike and unlicensed firearms.
Because of Purisima’s absence, Poe suspended the hearing.
She later told reporters that she was disappointed by the PNP chief’s no-show.
The PNP has been under fire for its failure to modernize and upgrade its firearms license database despite its reported P30-million contract with an IT provider, Progressive Ideas, and the involvement of some police officers in crime.
Purisima was also criticized for the alleged P25-million renovation of the “White House,” the official residence of the PNP chief at Camp Crame in Quezon City.