Even in civilians, Bartolome is still PNP chiefBy Philip C. Tubeza
Philippine Daily Inquirer
He may have arrived in civvies but he remains the PNP chief.
Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Nicanor Bartolome on Wednesday dropped by the formal awarding ceremonies in Camp Aguinaldo wearing civilian clothes, fueling speculations that he was preparing to move to a civilian job at the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG).
Bartolome wore a crisp barong tagalog at the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) Bakas Parangal awards unlike other ranking police, military and coast guard officials present who were in their formal service uniforms.
Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, Armed Forces Chief of Staff General Jessie Dellosa and President Benigno Aquino attended the awards ceremony for the rescuers who participated in the search for the late Secretary Jesse Robredo and the rescue efforts during the height of the southwest monsoon.
Bartolome was quick to quash speculations.
“Chief PNP pa rin (I’m still PNP chief),” Bartolome told reporters at the AFP Commissioned Officers Club in Camp Aguinaldo.
Bartolome said he also still had no plans of early retirement because he has yet to talk to President Aquino, who said last week he was considering Bartolome as a possible replacement for DILG Undersecretary Rico Puno.
Bartolome is set to retire on March 16, 2013, when he reaches the mandatory retirement age of 56.
“I still have no plans for that (early retirement). We haven’t talked about this. I would rather wait for final talks (with President Aquino),” Bartolome said.
Bartolome also explained that he wore his barong tagalog because he wanted to wear the same attire as former PNP Deputy Director General Arturo Cacdac Jr., who retired last week.
It turned out that Bartolome and Cacdac were attending the anniversary of the Civil Service Commission that was also being held at the AFP Commissioned Officers Club.