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Monday, July 22, 2024

Handling crimes

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“There seems to be not enough outrage from our public officials to finally stop POGO operations before they bring us down”

THE arrest of those four PNP personnel last week for their brazen daylight kidnapping of four foreigners in police uniforms in Pasay City was one of the most shocking I have seen in my years of police service.

I know there were police personnel getting involved in serious criminal activities before but never the way this case was executed in broad daylight for everyone to witness. What is going on in the PNP?

This single display has completely erased all well-earned trophy points by the PNP accumulated over many months of hard work.

Hopefully, those four PNP personnel involved which included a Police Major and senior Non-commissioned Officers are really just the few bad eggs in the organization as the PNP brass will surely be saying.

But when crimes like this are committed so brazenly in the capital city, it could be a symptom of a terrible malady that needs serious attention.

It could be a malignant disease that needs to be excised fast.

We can always attempt to dissect and analyze what is wrong and attempt to prescribe remedies, but if it is some kind of an insidious cancer, it will be hard to expunge.

The way this crime was executed is like those countries whose lawless elements have gotten the better of law enforcement agencies.

There are metropolitan areas around the world where criminals could rob, kill, and kidnap people without fear even in the presence of the police.

Of course, we are still far from being like Haiti wherein homicide and kidnapping rates per 100,000 population are astronomical but if we do not move aggressively to correct the situation we could get there very easily.

Look at those torture chambers of the raided POGO establishment in Porac, Pampanga.

Who would have thought such could be happening today?

Our country has become the center of human trafficking, money laundering and financial scams in the region.

A not so enviable a position and it is giving the country a big black eye.

Yet, there seems to be not enough outrage from our public officials to finally stop POGO operations before they bring us down.

Even China has been telling us to do away with POGO but all is quiet in the Western Front as they say.

No one probably wants to be the one to raise the sword that would slay the goose that lays the golden eggs.

Ever since I can remember, every Chief, PNP that comes along would always report crime volume is going down under his watch.

I have seldom come across a year’s crime rate report that has gone up.

Yet if we watch TV, read the newspapers and listen to the radio, we hear of many serious crimes being committed every day.

What we are being told and what is happening therefore do not seem to match.

Crime, just like any other human endeavor, evolves and policing must therefore also change with it.

Policing is certainly so different now compared to when my generation started in the service.

We now hear of cyber and transnational crimes.

The shenanigans for instance that go with POGO operations are all transnational crimes which for a police station like Porac, Pampanga can be difficult and complicated to investigate.

Furthermore, there is now a slow changing of the guards in the PNP.

Very soon, there will be no more Philippine Military Academy graduates in its Officers Corps which can happen as early as 2026.

By then, the bulk of the PNP Officer Corps will come from the PNPA.

And when that happens, a new concept of command culture will come into play which will have a profound effect on law enforcement in the country.

We would be seeing a different approach in the way the PNP as an organization is controlled and led by graduates of the PNPA.

And although some consider the PNPA a clone of PMA, graduates coming from that institution have different upbringing which will result in a profound change in Philippine policing.

We can only hope these changes will be for the better for the sake of the society.

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