Tisoy death toll now at 13

Maris Federez   •   December 4, 2019   •   349

A handout photo made available by Greenpeace-Philippines shows villagers working among damaged houses in the aftermath of Typhoon Kammuri in Legazpi city, Albay Province, Philippines, 03 December 2019. EPA-EFE/BASILIO SEPE

MANILA, Philippines – The death toll on the onslaught of Typhoon Tisoy (International Name: Kammuri) has now reached 13.

According to the Philippine National Police (PNP) Region 5 data, five were confirmed dead in the Bicol region, with one person recorded injured.

The Mimaropa Public Information Office, on the other hand, reported four fatalities in Oriental Mindoro and one in the province of Marinduque.

Calabarzon recorded two deaths in Quezon Province, while Leyte reported one fatality in Ormoc City.

So far, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) has not issued an official death toll on Tisoy’s aftermath.

NDRRMC spokesperson Mark Timbal said they are still verifying the reported fatalities.

The families of deceased victims will be given P20,000 financial aid, while those who were injured by the typhoon will be handed out P10,000.

The agency is still conducting damage assessment in infrastructure and agriculture.

“Yung assessment po sa Bicol at sa Samar provinces na dinaanan ng bagyo, ongoing. At nakikita po natin na ‘yung mga reports na nagkaroon ng mga pagbaha doon sa area, ito po’y unti-unting pinapadala sa atin ng mga kasamahan natin from the ground,” Timbal said.

The latest data from the NDRRMC said more than 100,000 families or over 400,000 individuals in Regions 3, 5, 8, NCR and Mimaropa were evacuated from their homes.

The NDRRMC has assured that relief goods are available and ready to be distributed in case affected provinces, even those under a state of calamity, will signify their need for additional supplies. (with inputs from Harlene Delgado) /mbmf

DILG says cops on ‘narco-list’ who opted to retire early not spared from probe, charges

Robie de Guzman   •   February 20, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo Año said that cops included in the narco-list who opted to file for optional retirement will not be exonerated from criminal charges if they are found to be involved in the illegal drug trade.

Año made the statement Wednesday after some members of the opposition group slammed reports on the move of the Philippine National Police (PNP) to give the 357 cops included in the narco-list the option to retire early to reduce the cases for adjudication.

PNP chief Gen. Archie Gamboa earlier said he is open to optional retirement of police officers accused of having drug links to lessen the government resources that will be used when the adjudication begins.

He, however, asserted that the early retirement won’t clear the cops from allegations and that this is not an easy way out.

He added that any officer who initially availed of the early retirement option will be pursued if proven to be involved in the narcotics trade.

Gamboa recently met with most of the 357 cops and explained to them the process of the two-way adjudication to be initiated based on his request to President Rodrigo Duterte.

The process involves adjudication at the regional and directorial level for one week before the cases go to the national level which will handle the cases for three weeks.

Once all the cases are submitted to the Office of the PNP Chief, it will take three days for him to submit the results of the adjudication for approval.

Año said the 357 cops accused of having drug links should present proof to remove their names from the narco-list.

“Patunayan nilang wala silang kaugnayan sa iligal na droga. Nasa kanila ang burden of proof, iprisinta nila ang mga ebidensya na magpapatunay na wala silang kinalaman at kaugnayan sa iligal na droga,” he said.

The DILG chief said the evidence should be presented to four agencies handling illegal drug reports – the PNP, the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency and the Intelligence Service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

“Hanggang hindi nagkakaroon ng pagkakasundo ang apat na ahensyang ito, hangga’t hindi nila sinasabi ng ‘Okay na yan’, magpapatuloy ang imbestigasyon,” he said.

The narco-list is a consolidation of intelligence and other reports from law-enforcement agencies and still needs to be verified and validated. Aside from uniformed personnel, the list also includes local officials and judges as well as other personalities.

Once a complaint is filed, it can be validated within a month, Año said.

He also said that the final clearance will come from the President. 

“Gusto nating maparusahan ang mga may kaugnayan sa iligal na droga” Año said. “I commend PNP Chief Gamboa for having the courage in resolving this issue na matagal ng burden ng PNP. We need to deal with this para makapagtrabaho na nang matino ang ating mga pulis,” he added.

PNP to begin crackdown after receiving list of illegal gambling operators

Aileen Cerrudo   •   February 19, 2020

The Philippine National Police (PNP) is set to begin crackdown operations after receiving the list of illegal gambling operators.

PGen. Archie Gamboa said the list is now in the hands of the regional directors and the PNP is already in the process of launching police operations.

Gamboa also said that police commanders will be relieved from office if they fail to accomplish their responsibilities.

“In the next few months, heads will roll if you don’t follow my instruction no-take and you’re not doing anything to stop illegal gambling,” he said.

Last week, the PNP Chief already relieved several local police officials for not curbing illegal gambling in their assigned areas.

They include 10 precinct and station commanders as well as chiefs of police in Metro Manila. —AAC (with reports from Lea Ylagan)

Overweight cops won’t get promoted, PNP chief warns

Robie de Guzman   •   February 13, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Thursday reiterated its warning to its personnel to get fit and have a normal body mass index (BMI) or risk having a hard time getting promoted.

PNP chief General Archie Gamboa made this warning during the physical fitness and BMI tests of cops held in Camp Crame in Quezon City.

Of the 86 policemen who took the test, 32 are overweight, five are obese while 49 are of normal weight.

Those who failed to achieve their ideal weight would have to enroll in the Public Safety Officers Basic Course Class to reduce their weight.

“If you are enrolled in the schooling program, it’s like you still have time to redeem yourself. You are allowed to reduce your weight. So that’s why we are giving it a leeway,” Gamboa said in a media interview.

Gamboa warned that those who will fail to get their BMI to a normal level would not be allowed to file for promotion.

“’Pag hindi ka umabot doon the BMI mo mismo you will not be allowed to file for promotion which is a very first step in a promotional process,” he said.

BMI is a measure of body fat based on height and weight of a person.

Gamboa stressed that a police officer should take care of their health in order to perform their mandate in maintaining peace and order, enforce the law, prevent and control crimes and ensure public safety and internal security. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Lea Ylagan)

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