THE Philippine National Police yesterday downplayed President Duterte’s statement that he will pick the aspirant to the PNP chief post who can guarantee the killing of all drug lords in the country.
“No cause for undue alarm. This is just the President’s way of expressing his intense desire to fight and end illegal drugs,” PNP spokesman Brig. Gen. Bernard Banac said.
Banac reiterated the police establishment is going to observe the rule of law in the war against drugs.
“Whoever will be chosen by the President as the next PNP chief, the campaign against illegal drugs and high value targets will remain relentless, following the rule of law and established procedures, with utmost respect for human rights,” Banac said.
Banac cited the arrest of a Chinese drug trafficker and his two Filipino cohorts in a series of operations last week in Makati and Las Piñas cities and the seizure of about 400 kilos of shabu “with no untoward incident.”
“However, knowing that drug syndicates and traffickers are well armed to protect their drug trade, the PNP is also prepared to respond accordingly if required by the situation as provided for by law, make calibrated action, and apply necessary force needed to contain the threat or risk against the lives of our cops posed by armed resistance,” Banac said.
The PNP has been lacking a full time PNP chief since October 14 following the resignation of Gen. Oscar Albayalde amid allegations that he was involved in ninja cops operations or the recycling of seized drugs.
PNP deputy chief for administration Lt. Gen. Archie Gamboa has been designated as the officer-in-charge of the PNP following Albayalde’s resignation.
Gamboa is among the three officers recommended by Interior Secretary Eduardo Año to become the next PNP chief. The two others are PNP deputy chief for operations Lt. Gen. Camilo Cascolan and chief of the PNP directorial staff Lt. Gen. Guillermo Eleazar.
Duterte has said he is having a hard time choosing the next PNP chief because he wants a “better deal” from the next leader. He said he will choose the candidate who can promise him to kill all drug lords the country.