The Philippine National Police (PNP) plans to acquire two more helicopters to boost its campaign against criminals, terrorists, rebels and other lawless elements.
The PNP chief, Director General Alan Purisima, said they had forwarded their request for additional air assets to President Benigno Aquino 3rd who vowed early this week to modernize the police force.
“We already made our request for the tactical helicopters and this will help us against rebels, terrorist and lawless elements,” Purisima said in a recent interview.
He said the helicopters could also be used by police in responding to other emergency situations such as disaster response.
In his visit to Camp Crame last Tuesday, the President said P9 billion has been earmarked for the PNP Transformation Program.
At present, the PNP has at least eight helicopters in its inventory of assets, according to the Directorate for Logistics. One of them is beyond economical repair, two are under investigation before the Office of the Ombudsman; one is unserviceable and four are for inspection at the PNP hangar at the domestic airport.
The two helicopters under investigation by the Office of the Ombudsman are the two controversial Raven Choppers, which was reportedly owned by the former first Gentleman, Jose Miguel Arroyo, which was sold as ‘brand-new’ to the PNP in 2009. ANTHONY VARGAS