Aquino vetoes law removing height requirement for cops, firemen, jail guards

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President Benigno Aquino III. FILE PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines—Policemen, firemen and jail guards should possess the necessary physical attributes to do their job, and that includes having the right height.

President Aquino has vetoed a bill repealing the height requirement for applicants to the Philippine National Police, Bureau of Fire Protection and Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, saying this was unnecessary because of an existing waiver of such requirement.

The President said that height should be retained among the qualifications for admission to the service under the PNP Reform and Reorganization Act of 1990, BFP and BJMP Professionalization Act of 2004, and the DILG (Department of Interior and Local Government) Act of 1990.

However, a waiver of this qualification — 5’4” for male and 5’2” for female — has been allowed under certain conditions, Mr. Aquino said.

“Hence the total repeal of the height requirement among these service bureaus is unnecessary,” he said in his veto message to Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile and House Speaker Feliciano Belmonte Jr.

While he agreed with its noble intent to address height equality in the three agencies, Mr. Aquino said he was “seriously apprehensive of the concerns” raised by the PNP and BJMP on the safety of their personnel and of the public.

“As raised by the BJMP, jail officers, by the nature of their work in guarding detainees or escorting criminals, must possess the necessary physical attributes to perform their functions effectively,” he said.

Too, public safety “is paramount in law enforcement by the PNP, as well as firefighting by the BFP,” he added.

With the veto, the President returned the consolidated enrolled Senate Bill No. 3217 and House Bill No. 6203 to Congress without his signature.

In essence, the President thought the proposed law would become “detrimental to the performance of their functions,” explained Abigail Valte, deputy presidential spokesperson.

This was the second bill vetoed by the President in a week’s time after the Magna Carta of the Poor, whose P3-trillion budget far exceeds the P2.006-trillion 2013 national budget. Mr. President admitted that the government could not implement the magna carta because of its big budget.

Valte disagreed with observations that lawmakers wasted resources and time to craft such a measure only to be vetoed by the President.

“I don’t think it was a waste. Let’s remember that the legislature is still independent from the Executive. That’s part of the system of checks and balances. They always have another option that they can resort to if they feel that this particular bill should still be passed into law,” she said in a briefing.

She said it would be up to the electorate to choose their next representatives in Congress.

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  • Camillo

    Anong klaseng mga batas ba yang pinapasa ng Kongreso?! At PNoy pa ang sasabihang nagsasayang ng pera by vetoing?! Congress is the one wasting our money!

  • troyg318

    wtf? will that help the economy? what a waste of tax payers money these legislators passing petty laws. why not create something that will stabilize the current economic reforms.

  • regd

    Ang daming batas na kailangan upang umangat tayo sa kahirapan tapos mga ganito lang ang pinapasa ng mga gunggong na herodes na mga mambabatas? PENDEJO!

    • Acute_Angle

      kaya nga, tapos iboboto pa yung mga “trapo”? si binay, bam aquino, jack enrile?

  • RyanE

    Without malice to anybody, but there should be a balance between height and intelligence. I have seen lot of big guys but with pea brains..

  • mg_harrier

    i would be more than happy pag may isang batas na nagsasabing libre na ang edukasyon mula elementarya hanggang kolehiyo,mapa-pribado man o pampublikong eskwelahan.saan kukunin ang pera?abolish the pork barrel and let it be used mostly on education.kaysa naman mapunta lang sa mga bugos na project o NGO at bulsa ng mga mambubutas este mambabatas.

  • MC M

    Sam Colt made all men equal…

  • Simplify1

    Dale nanaman mga papogi! Di bale bilang na ang mga araw nyo…

  • Simplify1

    Gagawa lang rin kayo ng ganyang klaseng batas, dapat sinabi nyo the requirement should be that all policemen should have a chest size larger than belly size all the time, such that once belly size equal chest size, he or she will be subjected to lifestyle check and audited for possible graft and corruption

  • Hey_Dudes

    And with that veto – someone from UNA Party who may not win the next presidency will be qualified for PO1 or PO2 lol!

  • boybakal

    The veto is discriminating.
    It deprives people of short height to be employed or join as cops.
    The law must be equal….there is rule of equality.

    As we are now in modern world of high tech, height is not a requirement anymore.
    Machine and equipment can do everything which big men do before the invention of machine.
    The problem with Pnoy is…when he vetoes a law, he wants more.
    Napapasarap ika nga.

    • Concur_Dissent

      Meron nang “waiver” of requirements on a case to case basis…meaning kung talagang nakikita ng DILG na hindi kailangan ang height, binibigyan eto ng appropriate dispensation, i.e. financial and audit forensics experts na talagang hindi na kailangan ang height…

    • fernan107

      boybakal , bago iveto ang isang batas ay pinag aaralan muna nila , hindi pirma ng pirma para magpapogi , kumokontra ka na lang yata para lang may masabi kang against sa pamumuno ni pnoy dahil di mo gusto si pnoy… ka indo naman magbago na tayo para sa bayan..

  • JosengSisiw1

    Pag malaki mas madaling tamaan, pag maliit madiling tirisin, so mamili lang kayo ng gusto nyong maging pulis ng bayan kasi pareho lang ang tong na hihingin ng mga yan.

  • Bobby Espedilla

    Pandak na nga wala pang karapatang makapasok. Discrimination! Masyado nyo namang minamaliit ang maliit.

  • Stuubs

    They should also make a law that disqualifies a “panot” or a “mongoloid” from running for president !

  • Stuubs

    Pnoy likes policemen 5’7″ tall at least, 5′ in height with a 7″ barrel ! he he he..

  • boybakal

    I think in the US or LAPD and NYPD….the height requirement is removed.
    Most Americans are 6 feet in height. Now they accept 5 footer like filipinos.
    Now, you can see Matt and Jeff partners.
    No height requirement to be LAPD or in the Army or Navy.

    Whereas Filipinos, mostly 5’4″ is the tallest.
    Below 5 feet is not really short, in American standard, 5 feet is 6 footer.
    Vetoing the bill is really discriminating.
    These short people are confined to work only in hobbit house.

  • boybakal

    Akala mo naman matatangkad ang mga Pilipino, akala mo mga 6 footer.
    Hoy di tayo americano, lahi tayo ng unano.

    May height requirement pa.
    The average height of a filipinos is 5′ dahil di nakakainom ng gatas.

    The only tall man I know is Tasiong Tangkad.

  • koolkid_inthehouse

    Please mostly trustworthy, with integrity and not a zombie. They must undergo martial arts training and provided with tools, equipments and weapons to compensate for their height.

  • Pio Pusli

    sayang, qualified na sana na secret agent si Weng weng. yong maging presidente may height limit ba? delikado si Jojo B.

  • jpastor

    This is plainly discrimination.

    • $14334231

      bakit, unano ka ba?….

      • jpastor

        ang babaw mo naman pre.

        Kahit under height kailangan bigyan ng pagkakataon dahil may karapatan ang bawat Pilipino na pumasok sa gusto niya trabaho.

        Kung kilala mo ito hindi mo maiisip manlalait ng kapwa…
        “…As a soldier he was a brigadier general in the US Army, receiving the Purple Heart and the Silver Star for his service during World War II, and a major general in the Philippine Army.”

        Ito ang isa sa mga maganda niyang nasabi kahit siya ay marahil “unano” sa tingin mo…

        “If a man is what his inheritance and his environment make him, and more what his environment rather than his inheritance enables him to become, then certainly the teacher rather than the parent himself is the most important factor in the shaping of a nation’s destiny.”

      • $14334231

        because he was the aide-de-camp to gen douglas mcarthur…at that time, he was a journalist, not a soldier..how he became a soldier could be that mcarthur himself decided to make him one (and a brig. gen. at that), because an aide-de-camp supposedly has to be an officer….he grew up on a well-to-do family that during the war, they left the island and lived in america and bought a house there to avoid the war in the philippines…how he got his purple heart is never mentioned nor if he was ever wounded in an actual battle against the japanese as he is always with mcarthur…so, tell me which battle was he wounded to receive a purple heart…he stood 5’4″ which is like an average filipino height…..so if you’re the same height as him, join in…..the military services need someone like you….you certainly sound intelligent enough…..

      • jpastor

        5′-4″ on his shoes.

        In effect he is a soldier and serve the country well regardless of his height. So the issue is not really the height and no one has the right to look down or call names on anybody who possesses such physical characteristics.

      • $14334231

        but how did he become a soldier?….nothing was mentioned about him being a 5’4″ with his shoes…..i want to hear your argument on how he became a soldier, and a general at that…..he was a journalist when he became the aide-de camp of mcarthur…..

      • jpastor

        How CPR become a soldier,general is not really the issue here. Thanks.

      • $14334231

        it was you who brought up this subject, him being a soldier and stood only 5’4″, not me…but i’m glad we both know our past…..hopefully some of the bloggers here learned something about Carlos P. Romulo, a man of distinction which we could all be proud of….

      • Kamoteng Baging

        5’4″ in his shoes is in Carlos Romulo’s wiki page, his website and just about anything written about him.

      • $14334231

        but did you see anything written about him how and why he became a soldier…make your own conclusion…he was a civilian journalist when he became aide-de-camp of mcarthur…..so, how did he enlist in the military (and u.s. army at that!)…..

  • Kamoteng Baging

    As a member of triple 5 club, I denounce P-Noy’s vetoing this bill. Philippines is probably one of the few countries where age, height, marital status and looks (pleasing personality anyone?) will prevent you from getting hired.

    To all those who think this is not a worthwhile bill. Have you seen a job advertisement for say an accounting clerk where one of the requirements states that you need to be female (or male), not more than 30 years old and single. How is being of certain gender, older and your marital statuses prevents you from operating an excel spreadsheet?

    • $14334231

      height absolutely should be included in hiring both military and police forces….this is always a given, in any country in the world…..but gender preferences in selecting government civilian employees and private sectors is a no no…….even secretarial jobs can be accomplished (probably, a lot better) by a man…..so i agree with you on this one…kung anu-ano kasi ang nasa ulo ng mga kumag na nag ha-hire…..

      • Kamoteng Baging

        Not true. At least in USA, except for some state troopers, there is no height requirement. You do have to pass physical tests (ex. carry 150lb dummy) and must have no physical deformities/ailments that will prevent you from performing your job.

      • $14334231

        c’mon man….you know if you’re 4′ 11″, there’s no way in hell any u.s services will take you…..name one flip accepted in u.s services that’s below 5 foot….

      • Kamoteng Baging

        Do a google on “shortest soldier”, “smallest man in the army”, “shortest enlisted soldier” will get you what you are looking for.

        A person’s height might prevent them from doing certain task, hence the physical test, but they can’t exclude you from at least signing up at least trying out. There is a big difference from what we do in the Philippines (you’re short, you’re out) and what USA is doing (you’re short, let see if you can scale a 12 foot wall and carry a grown man size and dummy).

      • $14334231

        you do the googling…knowing something not from what was taught to you in school is like copying an answer from your classmate….and besides, you brought it up, not me…when you find one , me know….

      • Kamoteng Baging

        That’s rich coming from you.

        Didn’t you write this

        “height absolutely should be included in hiring both military and police forces….this is always a given, in any country in the world” (have you actually research each and every military records of every country?)

        and this

        “you know if you’re 4′ 11″, there’s no way in hell any u.s services will take you”

        Then when asked to do some research, you went on again with your normal spiel. Anyway, since you are too lazy or proud to admit your mistake, here you go:

        PVT Lonnie J. Potter
        Platoon 3035
        Lima Company
        3rd Recruit Training Battalion
        Recruit Training Regiment
        Marine Corps Recruit Depot San Diego, CA
        March 1977-June 1977

        He is 4’10” and weighs 95 lbs.

        You want Filipino instead?

        Corporal Andrew Quiming, a welder with Marine Wing Support Squadron 371.

  • A. H. Forrester

    The selection of the right people oversee criminals should not be considered discriminatory. Dwarfs , midgets and flyweights cannot perform like full size people.

    • boybakal

      Manny Pacquiao was a flyweight and 5’6″.
      He went up and along the way knocked out all his opponents up to middleweight 6 feet in height.

      David killed Goliath.
      Filipinos are no giants, we are all the same in height.
      No discrimination please.

  • Rogers Nelson Uy

    Tanga talaga itong abnoy penoy na ito, di na dapat pinaguusapan muna yan, ayusin muna ang sistema, puro sangkot sa mga pagnanakaw, kidnapping, carnapping halos lahat jan tapos height pinaguusapan?!! Tanga Talaga!

  • MC M

    In general terms, any applicant who can complete the physical training required for their preferred method of service, in any industry or government service, should be allowed to perform those duties. Are there not other positions within operations that do not bring personnel into direct daily contact with dangerous people or have extreme physical demands? People who cannot pass the physical training requirements, but who have exhibited a strong willingness to serve, or excelled in other areas can also support the operations personnel in other important ways.

    Generally speaking, height is no real barrier. If you have ever met people from any professional special units, you will see their sizes do vary; but the common denominator is they were, regardless of their initial attributes, able to meet the demands of a selection process. If a midget can pass the physical selection process then by all means let him in…. even if you have to shorten his baton.

  • disqusted0fu

    That’s unfair. If there are physicality requirements in these bureaus, then more so that there should be requirements for government officials, especially for presidents, mentality wise. That way we can avoid having presidents who are only good for campaigning or checking bus stations or throwing jokes and whatnot.

  • boybakal

    Kasalanan lahat ito ni Gloria.
    Ayaw ni Pnoy na makakita ng pandak….kumukulo ang kanyang dugo.
    Kaya nga ipinakulong ni Pnoy si GMA ayaw niyang makita.
    Ngayon kung nagkalat ang pandak na pulis, maaalala niya si GMA.

    PS….dapat gawin ng aplicante, magsuot ng bakya para tumaas.

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