Latest Stories

New PNP chief told: Make polls peaceful


CHANGE OF COMMAND President Aquino watches the change of command from outgoing PNP chief Nicanor Bartolome (left) to PNP Director General Alan Purisima in Camp Crame, Quezon City, on Tuesday. Also witnessing the turnover are former President Fidel V. Ramos (left) and Interior Secretary Manuel Roxas. LYN RILLON

President Aquino on Tuesday issued his marching orders to newly installed Philippine National Police Director General  Alan Purisima: Ensure peaceful elections in 2013 and hunt down hooligans in the police force.

In a speech at the turnover of command at Camp Crame on Tuesday, the President warned hoodlums, drug addicts, bullies, abusive and corrupt PNP members that their days were numbered.

Mr. Aquino devoted much of his lengthy speech, which was delivered in Filipino, reminding the 148,000-strong police organization of its image problem in the eyes of a wary public.

He said that he had already presided over three change-of-command ceremonies in the PNP, but he noted that bad eggs continued to “soil the agency’s reputation.”

“We will never allow those expected to serve the country themselves to lead in committing anomalies,” Mr. Aquino said, stressing that the “straight path” would not tolerate uniformed police officers driving without a helmet or license, and displaying utak wangwang (abusive behavior) that only obstructed reforms.

The President bade goodbye to outgoing Director General Nicanor Bartolome, commending him for his “honest and reliable service,” and for having instituted a “one-strike policy” against erring police directors assigned to areas with rampant jueteng, or illegal gambling, operations.



Mr. Aquino praised Bartolome for “unselfishly” giving way to Purisima.

“He had to quit his post ahead of time to give way to the new leadership who will be tasked with safeguarding the next elections. With this decision comes ample time to prepare the police for achieving a clean and peaceful election. To Nic: Thank you for your concern and for voluntarily serving our country. Mabuhay ka, Nic (Long live, Nic),” said the President.

The President had publicly asked Bartolome, who was officially due to retire on March 16, to contemplate an early retirement to ensure smooth preparations for the 2013 midterm elections.

Mr. Aquino pointed out that Bartolome had done his share in the administration’s quest to cleanse the PNP of misfits.

Some of Bartolome’s accomplishments included going after “most wanted persons….” and pushing for the “PNP Peace and Order Agenda for Transformation and Upholding of the Rule of Law or PNP P.A.T.R.O.L. Plan 2030,” Mr. Aquino recalled.

In a well-applauded message to police officers who accepted bribes in exchange for the destruction of the environment, played blind to illegal logging, used illegal drugs, or engaged in reselling seized drugs, or got involved in robbery and mulcting, he said.

“Your days are numbered. My order is unequivocal—following the law is not optional. Once our paths cross, you would not only surrender your badge and uniform. We will replace these with an orange T-shirt (emblazoned) with a big letter ‘P’ (for prisoner) at the back.”

Culture of heroism

To erase the doubts and fears of the citizenry toward the police, all members of the police organization should band together and do their share in improving the image of the PNP, the President said.

This, he said, would help breed a “culture of honor and heroism in your ranks,” so that the public would “feel secure, not fearful every time they see you.”

Mr. Aquino confessed to having personal ties with Purisima, who served as aide to his mother, the late President Corazon Aquino, in 1987.

Since then, he said that their “association and relationship” bloomed even during times when Mr. Aquino was in the opposition, as congressman and later senator.

“Thus, I have utmost confidence that he would only side with what is right, and for sure he would cause extraordinary change in the police ranks compared to the system we inherited,” said the President.

Crucial test

The crucial test of leadership for Purisima will come during the May 2013 polls, he said.

“Our goal: for the entire police organization to serve as a monument of honor and integrity, successfully maintaining peace and order, especially in the coming elections. This maybe is the first challenge to your new leadership: The people are hoping that you could ensure order from the height of the campaign season to the close of the polls,” said Mr. Aquino, referring to the intent of the Secure and Fair Elections (SAFE) task force for the 2013 polls.

Purisima, as PNP deputy director general, headed this task force.

“We all know that only through free elections could we ascertain the real decision of the nation: Should we continue treading the straight path, or should we (place our bets on) those threatening to hale us back to the crooked system?” Mr. Aquino said.

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Alan Purisima , Benigno Aquino , Government , PNP , Police

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
  1. 12 senators on Napoles ‘pork’ list, says Lacson
  2. Save the queen? Aide takes fall for Enrile, Gigi Reyes
  3. Palace prepared to charge its allies
  4. Senator’s kickback from pork bigger than those of Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – Lacson
  5. Napoles turnaround alarms whistle-blowers
  6. What Went Before: Malacañang allies alleged involvement in pork scam
  7. Napoles spills beans on Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – De Lima
  8. Timeline: Napoles tell-all
  9. HK apology: Why Estrada and not Aquino?
  10. Cedric Lee’s cohort flies out of PH despite look-out order – De Lima
  1. Napoles spills beans on Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – De Lima
  2. Gigi Reyes pins blame on aide
  3. Estrada: Gigi Reyes won’t testify vs JPE
  4. Bernice Lee arrested by NBI team
  5. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  6. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  7. Suspect in Vhong Navarro’s mauling wants to turn state witness – De Lima
  8. Reckless driver endangered lives of Aquino, entourage–report
  9. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  10. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  4. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  5. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  6. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  7. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  8. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  9. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia
  10. Napoles spills beans on Enrile, Estrada, Revilla – De Lima


  • Ex-COA chief and co-accused in Arroyo plunder case nabbed
  • Kris Aquino’s ex- close in security named new Air Force chief
  • The ‘link diagram’ that killed ex-Bataan police officer
  • Cebu has hair of John Paul II and piece of John XXIII’s skin
  • LTRFB denies Victory Liner appeal
  • Sports

  • NLEX holds off Jumbo Plastic for a playoff berth
  • Pacquiao can dodge tax issues
  • F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone rejects bribery charges
  • Big Chill freezes Cafe France to arrest skid
  • Pacquiao has to go through PBA Rookie draft
  • Lifestyle

  • Gongs and southern dances star in a workshop at San Francisco Bayanihan Center
  • This woman ate what?
  • Photos explore dynamics of youths’ sexual identity
  • 12th Philippine Food Expo set at the World Trade Center
  • No tourist draw, Malang the croc will remain wild
  • Entertainment

  • Smithsonian wants photos, videos for ‘Day in the Life of Asian Pacific Americans’
  • What Garcia Marquez left behind
  • Has Ai Ai fallen deeply with ‘sireno?’
  • Sony developing live-action Barbie comedy
  • California court won’t review Jackson doctor case
  • Business

  • Metro Pacific acquires stake in Victorias
  • How ‘one percent’ economic elite was uncovered
  • Facebook profits triple as mobile soars
  • Insular Honors Sales Performers at Testimonial Rites
  • Apple increases stock buyback, will split stock
  • Technology

  • Enrile in Masters of the Universe, Lord of the Rings?
  • Top Traits of Digital Marketers
  • No truth to viral no-visa ‘chronicles’
  • ‘Unlimited’ Internet promos not really limitless; lawmakers call for probe
  • Viber releases new design for iPhone, comes to Blackberry 10 for the first time
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 24, 2014
  • Talking to Janet
  • Respite
  • Bucket list
  • JPII in 1981: walking a tightrope
  • Global Nation

  • Filipinos second-shortest in Southeast Asia
  • Obama to visit Filipino soldiers in Fort Bonifacio
  • Fil-Am youth conferences unite under one theme
  • Embassy advisory: Filipinos still need visas to enter US
  • No travel restriction to Mideast, DFA clarifies
  • Marketplace