Drilon urges Pres. Aquino to immediately select new PNP chief

admin   •   February 6, 2015   •   2903

FILE PHOTO: Senate President Franklin Drilon (UNTV News)

MANILA, Philippines – Senate President Franklin Drilon urged President Benigno Aquino III to immediately select a competent replacement for General Alan Purisima who tendered his resignation late Thursday afternoon.

Drilon said, Purisima’s replacement should be able to effectively lead the Philippine National Police (PNP) and overcome many challenges, especially now that the police force is affected by the recent turn of unfortunate events.

Drilon added that the immediate appointment of a new PNP chief is crucial to the chain of commands in the PNP.

The Senate President also made an appeal to Purisima to cooperate with all investigating bodies in uncovering truths behind the Mamasapano encounter.

Malacañang Press Corps is awaiting President’s announcement regarding Purisima’s resignation. (UNTV News)

Drilon wants NBI legal exec tagged in ‘pastillas scheme’ disbarred

Robie de Guzman   •   September 23, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Senate Minority Leader Frankiln Drilon on Wednesday urged the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to file a disbarment case against its official who was arrested for his alleged involvement in the ‘pastillas scheme’ in the Bureau of Immigration.

Drilon made the call following the arrest of Atty. Joshua Capiral, NBI’s head of legal assistance division, for allegedly accepting bribes from persons involved in the modus in exchange for exclusion from charges.

“Bantay salakay ang tawag dito. Yung inatasan na mag-imbestiga sa katiwalian sila yung gumagawa ng katiwalian,” he said in an interview over Teleradyo.

“He is a disgrace to the legal profession. We lawyers took an oath to tell nothing but the truth. Capiral violated that sacred oath of lawyers. All he did in the NBI is to enrich himself through corruption,” he added.

When asked whether the case of Capiral warrants a Senate investigation, Drilon said he will support an investigation if there is evidence of massive corruption in NBI – like in the case of PhilHealth and the Bureau of Immigration.

“At this point I think there is no evidence of massive corruption in the NBI. This is a laudable move for the NBI to arrest one of its members. The NBI should make an example out of Capiral that corruption has no place in the agency,” Drilon said.

“If we do not address this, everybody will believe that they can bribe the NBI and having that perception is not good in the fight against corruption,” he added.

Capiral was nabbed in an entrapment operation on Monday night. He underwent inquest proceedings at the Department of Justice on Wednesday morning.

The two are facing complaints for extortion under the Revised Penal Code and violation of the Anti-Graft Practices Act, the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employee, and Executive Order No. 608 which established a national security clearance system for government personnel with access to classified matters.

Drilon said that Capiral’s case is among the reasons why the public tend to lose confidence in the government’s ability to stop corruption.

“This is one of the reasons why Filipinos are losing faith in the ability of the government to fight corruption. This only shows how rampant corruption is today,” he said.

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Drilon hopes House squabble won’t delay passage of 2021 budget

Robie de Guzman   •   September 22, 2020

Senator Franklin Drilon

MANILA, Philippines – Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon is hoping that the power struggle brewing in the House of Representatives will not delay the passage of the PP4.5-trillion national budget for 2021.

Drilon said the immediate passage of the next year’s budget is critical amid the coronavirus pandemic as it seeks to address unemployment and the imminent economic contraction that is projected to be 6% to 9% by the end of 2020.

“Certainly, a power struggle in the House of Representatives will affect our timelines and I hope not because we are still in the middle of a pandemic and we have about 10% unemployment,” he said in an interview on ANC on Monday.

Drilon noted that this is not the first time that a power play ensued at the lower House, recalling the congressmen’s bickering over infrastructure funds in 2018 that delayed the passage of the 2019 national budget for over four months.

He said the economic managers blamed the budget delay for the economic slowdown. The government was also forced to operate on a re-enacted budget.

The senator underscored that the government cannot afford another delay in the approval of the budget bill as it would affect the implementation of key development programs.

“The budget provides the spending authority for the government. If there is no spending authority because of the delay in the budget, what would happen is, there will be a re-enacted budget and a re-enacted budget would mean that new programs will not be funded or would have to wait until the budget is passed,” he said.

Earlier reports said that the bickering among congressmen is supposedly over infrastructure funds of legislative districts lodged under the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).

When asked whether the ongoing squabble is connected to the 2022 elections, Drilon responded with: “I would like to attribute good faith. But you cannot discount that this is part of the preparations for 2022. I have been in Congress long enough to know that if there is anything you should exercise extra vigilance, it is what is called the election year budget.”

He also said that the allocations under the DPWH budget should be “disaggregated in the spirit of transparency.”

The proposed P4.5-trillion national budget is currently being deliberated by both houses of Congress.

Over the weekend, House Deputy Speaker and presidential son, Davao Rep. Paolo Duterte threatened to declare the seats of House leaders amid the row fueled by the “disparity” in infrastructure budget allocations in their respective legislative districts.

Police units join pursuit against Maguindanao bombers

Maris Federez   •   September 19, 2020

Map of Maguindanao

MANILA, Philippines — Police special fighters backed by light armor units have joined the pursuit operations against the suspects behind a roadside bombing in Maguindanao on Friday night (September 18).

According to a statement sent by the Philippine National Police (PNP) to the media on Saturday, the bombing resulted in the death of a Marine personnel and the wounding of four other military men.

The report said that personnel of the Maguindanao Police Provincial Office, the 2nd Provincial Mobile Force Company, the 404th Special Action Company, and the Light Armor Unit of the PNP-SAF were first to respond to the scene of explosion at 7:50 PM on Friday along the provincial road near the Integrated Provincial Health Office (IPHO) in Shariff Aguak.

Police post-blast investigators have likewise sifted through the debris around the seat of explosion of the suspected improvised explosive device (IED).

The report also said that PNP Chief, PGen. Camilo Pancratrius P Cascolan, was informed of the incident thru the PNP Command Center.

Cascolan then immediately alerted newly-installed PRO-BAR Regional Director, PBGen. Samuel Rodriguez to mobilize maneuver units for tactical operations against the suspects.

The personnel of the Philippine Marines on board a troop carrier were reportedly coming from a military operation against BIFF elements in Barangay Salman when the bombing happened.

They were immediately rushed to the nearby IPHO by the responding PNP personnel. — /mbmf

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