PNP: No cover-up in reinstatement of police in Albuera mayor’s killing

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PHILIPPINE National Police Chief Ronald de la Rosa said on Wednesday it was President Rodrigo Duterte who wanted the reinstatement of a controversial police official who has been linked to the murder of a former mayor
from Leyte, to justify his pay.

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NO COVER-UP Philippine National Police chief Ronald de la Rosa (left) and Reynante Arceo (right), undersecretary at the Department of Justice, attend a Senate inquiry into the reinstatement of policemen involved in the killing of Albuera Mayor Rolando Espinosa on Wednesday. Arceo represented Justice chief Vitaliano Aguirre 2nd.

“The President intimated to me walang ginagawa ‘yung mga ‘g***o’ na ‘yan. Pagtrabahuhin mo ‘yan dahil sayang ‘yung government money na sinusweldo nila wala silang ginagawa [The President intimated to me that these good-for-nothing policemen were not doing anything and yet were being paid their salaries with government money],” said de la Rosa in his testimony before the Senate on Wednesday.

De la Rosa said he viewed the President’s statement as a “necessary instruction” for him to obey. “But when we see each other, he is intimating to me that it is a waste of government money if they have no work to do. You might as well use them,” he said.

The Senate was conducting an inquiry into why the Department of Justice (DOJ) downgraded the murder charges against Supt. Marvin Marcos, then head of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) in Eastern Visayas, and 18 other policemen to homicide.

Marcos and 18 other policemen are accused of killing Albuera mayor Rolando Espinosa and fellow inmate Raul Yap while in detention at the Baybay subprovincial jail in Leyte on November 5, 2016.

Marcos and his men were suspended pending results of a police investigation.

Marcos, now head of the CIDG in Soccsksargen, has a base pay of P40,298 a month. A police superintendent is equivalent to lieutenant colonel in the Armed Forces of the Philippine.

Sen. Panfilo Lacson expressed concern that Marcos is being “coddled” and may even be promoted after six months.

“The signal is very loud. We have all the reason to suspect na parang kino-coddle masyado si Marcos ditto (Marcos is being coddled here). That’s the reason why I asked. The position of the regional director of CIDG in Soccksargen carries the rank of a senior superintendent,” he said.

“So there is a big possibility that after six months, which is the required residency period (for CIDG Region 12 director), he can even be promoted to Senior Superintendent,” Lacson said in an interview.

Dela Rosa admitted that “there is a likelihood” that Marcos may be promoted. “If he is not disqualified (from getting a promotion), then he is qualified.”

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