CLOSE to eight out of 10 Filipinos believe there are “ninja cops,” or police who allegedly sell illegal drugs confiscated during operations, the 2019 fourth quarter survey of the Social Weather Station done from December 13 to 16 showed.
The survey, which involved 1,200 adult respondents nationwide with a margin of error of ±3 percent, showed that 78 percent of Filipino adults believe there are “ninja cops” among members of the police force (46 percent strongly believe, 32 percent somewhat believe), while 7 percent do not believe they exist (4 percent somewhat do not believe, 3 percent strongly do not believe). Fifteen percent were undecided.
This resulted in a net belief score (percent of believe minus percentage of do not believe) of +70, correctly rounded.
The SWS said belief in the existence of ninja cops was highest among respondents from Metro Manila at +77 (83 percent believe, 6 percent do not believe), followed by those from Luzon at +71 (77 percent believe, 6 percent do not believe), the Visayas at +69 (77 percent believe, 8 percent do not believe), and Mindanao at +65 (75 percent believe, 10 percent do not believe).
The survey firm also found out that 67 percent believe there are “many ninja cops” in the PNP (23 percent very many “ninja cops,” 44 percent) while 31 percent said there is little to almost no ninja cops (28 percent little, and 3 percent almost none). One percent could not say if there are many ninja cops or a few ninja cops.
SWS also said that 50 percent of the respondents believed the accusation that former PNP chief Oscar Albayalde is a protector of “ninja cops” (20 percent strongly believe, 30 percent somewhat believe) while 13 percent believe otherwise (6 percent somewhat do not believe, 7 percent strongly do not believe). Thirty-seven percent were undecided. This resulted in a net belief score of +37.
Net belief in the accusation that Albayalde is a protector of “ninja cops” was highest in the Visayas at +43 (56 percent believe, 13 percent do not believe), followed by Metro Manila at +40 (53 percent believe, 13 percent do not believe), Luzon at +36 (48 percent believe, 11 percent do not believe, correctly rounded), and Mindanao at +33 (48 percent believe, 15 percent do not believe).
President Duterte on Tuesday said he wants Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año to address the problems in the PNP, particularly corruption, before he could appoint a new chief of the police force.
“They should have a commander. I said, if I appoint one from them, from their, from their ranks, he (Año) would not be able to solve the problem…I have given Secretary Año the blanket authority to get rid of corruption. And it is on his shoulder the future of how the police would behave in the coming years — na kay Año ‘yan (It’s up to Año),” he said.
Albayalde stepped down in October ahead of his retirement in November over allegations linking him to alleged ninja cops.