AUTONOMOUS Region in Muslim Mindanao officials have expressed their collective resentment in the current administration and police official’s practice of re-assigning erring police officers to certain areas in their region as they deem the practice as “an insult and must stop immediately.”
“We are standing up for our integrity and dignity as a people as the practice of dumping errant or undesirable members of the Philippine National Police to our region is both an insult and a great social injustice to the people of ARMM,” Assemblyman Abol Alam Padate said in a recent privilege speech.
This practice is a “sheer insult that should not be taken sitting down” as Padate noted recent reports that 34 rogue policemen have been deployed to ARMM or the Cordillera regions.
Padate pointed out that he and ARMM Gov. Mujiv Hataman have separately urged Philippine National Police Chief Ronald dela Rosa to reconsider this action.
“This injury to and mistreatment of the ARMM and the Bangsomoro should no longer continue.”
He then quoted the 1987 Constitution’s mandate of respecting the autonomous regions of Muslim Mindanao and the Cordilleras for human development and empowering the people for social justice.
However, the transfer of rogue cops to ARMM violates this principle, Padate said.
“Will shady police officers empower us with an environment for social justice? Is the PNP an organization that will help us build a framework for social justice? On the contrary, it promotes the idea that we deserve less. It reinforces the propaganda of radical groups that the government is our enemy then, and our government is still our enemy now,” he lamented.
President Rodrigo Duterte was earlier reported citing one of the reasons why Basilan is the place for erring cops because the stations (police detachments) are favorite target of bombings and raids.
The practice of “dumping” or reassigning erring members of the Philippine National Police was President Duterte’s “punishment” for cops whom he described as “errant and scalawags.”
Meanwhile, in the aspect of the region’s cultural heritage, ARMM Party-List Representative Sitti Djalia Turabin-Hataman pointed out erroneous information in identifying the origins of the indigenous fabrics worn by some of the Miss Universe candidates.
The most glaring error was the attribution of the Tenun, which produced originally by the Yakans, was erroneously identified as Zamboanga made. The Tenun is worn by the women in Basilan on special occasions.
“Being a traditional art advocate, I hope it was represented as a heritage, not just a cloth. If people understood their value and the story behind every piece, not just of the Yakan Tenun, but of all the fabrics presented there, it would have made the contestants really proud to have worn them,” she said.