10 cops get Metrobank awardsBy Matikas Santos
MANILA, Philippines—Ten police officers were given honors by the Metrobank Foundation Inc. (MBFI) in its annual search for the Country’s Outstanding Policemen in Service (COPS).
“This year’s batch of outstanding policemen and policewomen serves as a testament to our police force’s continuing dedication to their sworn duty and professionalism [in] performing their responsibilities,” MBFI president Aniceto Sobrepena said in a statement released during the awarding ceremonies last July 30.
“Through the search for COPS, we honor the exemplary members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) who have worked together with their communities in implementing crime solution and prevention,” he added.
The awaredees in the commissioned officers category were Superintendent Belli Tamayo in Quezon City, Chief Inspector Vicente Cabatigan from Laguna, Senior Inspector Charity Galvez of Butuan City, and Superintendent Bernard Banac in Quezon City.
Six officers were awarded in the non-commissioned officers category: Police Officer 3 (PO3) Eduardo Santiago of Pangsinan, Senior Police Officer 3 (SPO3) Renjun Bagaman from Koronadal City, SPO3 Rhia Sotomil of Iloilo, PO3 Mary Jane Perez from Cotabato City, SPO4 Ma. Rosario Suarez of Davao Citty, and SPO3 Robert Fabregas of Quezon City.
Sobrepena noted that “four policewomen awardees [were] shining in our usually male dominated competition.”
COPS, which was already in its 10th year, will award P300,000 in cash to the winners and a trophy from the MBFI. The “Medalya ng Katangi-tanging Gawa,” will also be conferred to the awardees by the PNP.
The awardees were described as models of “excellence and champions of community mobilization” that others in the police force could emulate, Sobrepena said in his speech. He said that COPS seek to further professionalize the PNP and to give a more positive image for the police.
“COPS is an expression of the private sector’s gratitude to the heroism, gallantry, dedication, commitment and great sacrifices of the Filipino Police in maintaining peace and order in the country,” Sobrepena said.
More than a hundred nominees went through the rigorous screening and panel interview process of a board of judges from different sectors of society.
Court of Appeals Justice Andres Reyes Jr., one of the judges, said “As a public servant, I can say that I understand their feelings and the hardships they had to face. Given the resources to perform their job and at the same time being subjected to scrutiny, I can really feel for them and sympathize with them.”
The awardees will go on to compete against the winners of MBFI’s “Search for Outstanding Teachers” and “The Outstanding Philippine Soldiers” for the final “Outstandings Filipinos” awards that will be held on September 5 during Metrobank’s 50th anniversary.
This year’s COPS awardees will also join the ranks of PROTECT or Policemen Responsible for Organizing, Training, Empowering Communities, “an honor society of COPS winners who are now spearheading pay-it-forward project.”
“Now more than ever, our country needs to remain stable and secure to preserve and sustain the gains of our economic growth. The organizers of COPS believe that the PNP is at the core of keeping the rule of law and our society safe and secure, not only for the [country's] businesses to grow, but for our political and social life to remain vibrant and strong,” Sobrepena said.