DILG orders PNP, local execs to monitor, arrest individuals who throw stones at PNR trains

Robie de Guzman   •   March 9, 2020   •   660

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) has ordered the Philippine National Police and barangay officials to closely monitor and arrest those who will throw stones at the newly-deployed trains of the Philippine National Railways (PNR).

DILG Secretary Eduardo Año made the pronouncement following reports that the front glass windshields of new PNR trains were damaged by stones thrown along the tracks.

“Inaatasan ko ang ating kapulisan at ang mga barangay officials na nakatalaga malapit sa dinadaanan ng tren na maging mapagbantay at siguruhing hindi mapipinsala ang mga tren na ito para matagal pang magamit at mapakinabangan ng publiko,” Año said in a statement posted Monday.

He said reports on stone-throwing incidents are “alarming” as these have become a common incident in Metro Manila.

“Nakakalungkot na may mga taong sadyang mapaminsala at sinasabotahe ang mga proyekto ng pamahalaan tulad ng PNR trains kaya sa oras na mahuli sila ng ating kapulisan at mga taga-barangay, kalaboso aabutin nila,” he said.

“Leave our new PNR trains alone. Makisama naman po tayo, para po ito sa kapakinabangan ng ating mga kapwa Pilipino. Ang paninira sa mga proyekto ng pamahalaan ay labag sa batas at sinumang mahuli sa akto at mapatunayang may sala ay mananagot. Huwag na po natin itong paabutin pa doon,” he added.

The PNR on February 20 deployed two train sets, procured from Indonesian manufacturer PT Industri Kereta Apri (INKA) on Tutuban in Manila to Los Baños in Laguna. The new train sets are composed each of eight rail cars with four-car formation.

Año warned that police and barangay officials will not hesitate to arrest individuals or groups who will be caught red-handed no matter what age or social status they may be. 

He also encouraged the public to report to authorities if they have witnessed any act that inflicted damage on the trains.

“Tulong na po natin ito sa ating pamahalaan. Alagaan po natin ang mga bagong tren na ito sapagkat ito po ay para sa inyo. I-report ninyo po ang mga makikita ninyong paninira sa ating mga tren,” he said.

Next PNP Chief: DILG’s Año to recommend 5 names to Duterte

Robie de Guzman   •   August 7, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año is set to submit to President Rodrigo Duterte his shortlist of candidates to be the next chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP).

In an exclusive interview with UNTV News, Año said his list would consist of five names – three of them are three-star generals and are members of the PNP command group. The remaining two would be two-star and one-star generals but he has yet to pick the names of those he will recommend to the president.

“Sa ngayon, pare-parehas sila eh. Pero for sure, yung mga 3-star [generals] kasama yan sa ire-recommend ko. Pag-aaralan ko pa yung mga 2-star at 1-star na pwede isama sa listahan but I will submit five names,” he said.

Año said he will submit the list at least a week before the mandatory retirement of PNP chief General Archie Gamboa.

Gamboa will bow out of the police service when he reaches the mandatory retirement age of 56 on September 3.

“Normally, mga two weeks to one week before magsusubmit na ulit ako ng pangalan sa Pangulong Duterte kung sino mga ire-recommend ko, pero ibig sabihin naman nun, ang Pangulong Duterte pwedeng pumili anybody from one-star to three-star,” the DILG chief said.

Whoever will be chosen from the five would inherit a PNP that is among the country’s frontliners in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.

All generals in the police force are eligible to be promoted to the police’s top post. The president may also choose a general outside the shortlist given by Año to be his next police chief.

When asked about the possible extension of Gamboa’s term as PNP chief amid the public health crisis, Año replied with: “Palagay ko naman wala na siguro kasi bawal naman ang extension kasi, so we have to follow the law,” he said. “Ang organization naman kasi dynamic, naka-lay out naman dyan ang direction plans kahit naman sino umupo diyan, itutuloy nya lang yung programs.”

Among the three-star generals and members of command group of the PNP are deputy chief for administration Lieutenant General Camilo Cascolan, deputy chief for operations Lieutenant General Guillermo Eleazar, and chief directorial staff Lieutenant General Cesar Hawthorne Binag.

Cascolan belongs to the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) Sinagtala Class of 1986, while both Eleazar and Binay belong to PMA Hinirang Class of 1987.

Cascolan will retire in November 2020, Eleazar in November 2021, and Binag in April 2021.

Meanwhile, among the two-star and one-star generals whose names might get picked on for the top police post are directorate for operations director Major General Emmanuel Licup, National Capital Region Police Office director Major General Debold Sinas, and Police Regional Office 4A director Brigadier General Vicente Danao Jr.

Both Licup and Sinas belong to the PMA Hinirang class of 1987 while Danao belongs to the PMA Sambisig Class of 1991. – RRD (from the report of Correspondent Lea Ylagan)

DILG tells LGUs to start planning for local recovery even if COVID-19 crisis is not yet over

Robie de Guzman   •   August 6, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) on Thursday urged local government units (LGU) to start planning and budgeting for local recovery and rehabilitation even if the threat of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is not yet over.

In a statement, DILG spokesperson Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said the DILG, with technical support of the World Bank, has developed the “Ready to Recover (We Rise as One) COVID-19 Local Recovery Planning Guide” to help the LGUs prepare and recover from the current public health crisis.

“We need to recover now kahit ‘di pa tapos ang COVID-19 crisis kasi mas lalala ang epekto nito sa ekonomiya at kabuhayan ng ating mga kababayan,” Malaya said.

“The DILG is collaborating with other national government agencies in the Interagency Task Force (IATF) to help LGUs prepare their recovery strategies and programs. The goal is to build back better,” he added.

Malaya said that with vast parts of the country now classified as low-risk, most of the country can now begin recovery efforts on the local level to protect jobs and stimulate economic activity. 

“With private consumption and investment still down, it is now up to the national and local governments to drive consumption and investment with government spending and policies that support the growth and recovery of local businesses,” he said.

The DILG spokesman said that the planning guide will simplify the recovery and rehabilitation planning to give LGUs flexibility in interventions as it has provided sample frameworks, templates, and suggested programs, projects, and activities.

“It will guide LGUs on the coordination of recovery efforts of national, regional, and local governments including the roles, responsibilities, and institutional structures,” he said.

Malaya also stated that LGUs need not create a new local body to do the local recovery planning and budgeting as this can be done through the creation of an economic cluster within the existing Local COVID-19 Task Force headed by a mayor or governor.

In financing the local recovery from the pandemic, Malaya said that the DILG has identified at least indicative fund source options based on existing government guidelines that can be tapped by LGUs to help address the challenges of fund availability.

He said these options include national government programs and financing assistance programs of select government financial institutions (GFIs) and government-owned and controlled corporations (GOCCs).

Other possible sources are the Local Government Support Fund – Financial Assistance to LGUs (LGSF – FA), LGSF –Assistance to Municipalities, Seal of Good Local Governance (SGLG) Incentive Fund, Kapit Bisig Laban sa Kahirapan- Comprehensive and Integrated Delivery of Social Services – National Community-Driven Development Program (KALAHI-CIDSS NCDDP), Regular Agency Budget, and the 20% Development Fund (DF), he noted.

“Hindi kayo basta iiwan na lang ng nasyunal na gobyerno. We will monitor your local recovery programs and projects and assess your progress to ensure you stay on track and achieve your intended results,” Malaya said.

PNP won’t arrest quarantine violators in first 3 days of MECQ period

Aileen Cerrudo   •   August 6, 2020

The Philippine National Police (PNP) said they will not conduct any arrest during the first three days of the modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ).

PNP Chief PGen. Archie Gamboa said they will implement maximum tolerance at all times and will only serve warnings to quarantine violators during the three-day headstart. This would give the public time to adjust to the National Capital Region’s shift to MECQ.

“Bibigyan natin ang publiko ng swift warning on the first initial days of violations kasi kung nag-adjust ang PNP, nag-aadjust din sila and ang reminder ko lang ay maximum tolerance on the part of the PNP especially the women and elderly kung may lalabas man na elderly (We will give the public a swift warning in the first initial days of violations because if the PNP has to adjust, so do they. My only reminder is maximum tolerance on the part of the PNP especially for the women and the elderly),” he said.

The PNP Chief also reminds the public to cooperate with authorities and not provoke any officers.

“Sana naman the public will cooperate, para hindi mapilitan ang PNP na mag impose ng regulation. So please, we want the cooperation of the public para maiwasan natin ang confrontation sa checkpoint (I hope the public will cooperate and not force the PNP to impose regulation. So we want the cooperation of the public to avoid confrontation at checkpoints),” Gamboa said.

Metro Manila, Cavite, Laguna, Bulacan have been placed under MECQ until August 18. AAC (with reports from Lea Ylagan)

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