Azurin: Half of ranking cops already vetted

Azurin declined to elaborate on the recommendations of the advisory group, saying he does not want to preempt the decision of the President

Philippine National Police chief Police General Rodolfo Azurin announced on Tuesday that its five-member advisory group has already assessed half of the 955 police generals and colonels to cleanse the ranks from possible involvement in illegal drugs and has made recommendations to President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.

Azurin revealed that the five-man advisory group’s recommendations were made to the President through the National Police Commission which includes him as an ex-officio commissioner.

“Almost half or more than a little over of half of the third level officers had been evaluated and assessed and recommendations had been submitted already to the Office of the President through the Napolcom for rechecking and further assessment and it’s up to President whether to accept the resignation of the officers’ courtesy resignations,” Azurin said.

However, Azurin declined to elaborate on the recommendations of the advisory group, saying he does not want to preempt the decision of the President.

“Due to the sensitivity of the ongoing evaluation, we’ll just release the result of our recommendation upon the approval of the President,” the PNP chief said.

“It will be premature if we will be releasing the recommendations it and then the President’s decision will be different. So we just have to wait for the approval of our President, based on the recommendation of the advisory group, through the Napolcom,” he added.

Aside from Azurin, the members of advisory group were retired police general and Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong, Office of the Presidential Adviser on Military Affairs Undersecretary Isagani Nerez, former Defense Secretary Gilbert Teodoro and retired Court of Appeals Justice Melchor Sadang.

Based on the agreement, officials whose resignations would be accepted would be forced to retire, regardless of how long they are supposed to still stay in the PNP.

The mandatory retirement age of uniformed personnel of the PNP is 56 and those who were asked to resign include generals and police colonels, some of whom still have at least eight years in the service.

In the next three months, Interior Secretary Benjamin Abalos Jr. said the committee would thoroughly vet police officials and submit the names of those whose resignations are accepted to the Napolcom for another round of verification before submitting their recommendation to the President.

The move aims to cleanse the ranks of officers in the police organization from possible influence or connivance with drug syndicates.


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