Latest Stories

Police force of Negros town relieved

Move aims to stop pols from using lawmen


BACOLOD CITY—Except for its newly installed acting head, the entire police force of Pulupandan town in Negros Occidental was relieved on Saturday upon orders of Camp Crame to ensure that the lawmen would not be influenced by politicians.

The move came two weeks after three policemen assigned to the station were relieved for allegedly escorting Pulupandan Mayor Magdaleno Peña, who had challenged the chief of staff of Gov. Alfredo Marañon Jr. to a fistfight at the capitol on March 25.

In a letter to Interior Secretary Manuel Roxas II, Marañon said Peña’s challenge to Jose Maria Valencia showed the “temerity and arrogance” of the mayor and his police escorts “to create trouble and instill fear and terror among the populace, simply to advance their election interests.”

“If they can do it to the governor at the provincial capitol, they can likewise do it to anybody,” the letter said.

Senior Inspector Edfel Balibadlan, Police Officer 3 Ronald Palacios and olice Officer 2 Lelanie Lagoting have been placed under technical arrest and disarmed pending investigation. Senior Insp. Anthony Grande replaced Balibadlan as officer in charge of the Pulupandan police.

Camp Crame issued the relief order to the town’s 16 policemen several days after Marañon wrote Roxas and asked for the relief of Senior Supt. Celestino Guara, caretaker of the provincial police, for being “partisan.” Guara denied the charge.

Guara caught the ire of the governor after he announced that the killing of PO1 Bejein Tanguan and police asset Joseph Lutrago in Barangay (village) Poblacion in Escalante City, about 500 meters from the police station, was not politically motivated but insurgency related.

Lutrago was a political campaigner of mayoral candidate Santiago Barcelona, who is running against Peña, and the United Negros Alliance, which is headed by Marañon.

Pulupandan and Escalante are among the 13 towns and cities in Negros Occidental which were placed under the watch list of the Philippine National Police and the Commission on Elections (Comelec) due to their history of election-related incidents, intense political rivalry and the presence of armed men.

Marañon asked Roxas to direct the Army, in lieu of the PNP, to assist the Comelec in the conduct of the May 13 polls in Pulupandan, Escalante and other hot spots in the province.

The governor, who is running for reelection, also sought the filing of charges against Peña. But the mayor, who is supporting the gubernatorial bid of Vice Gov. Genaro Alvarez Jr., said he had not violated the Election Code or any other provisions of the law through the use of the local police.

Guara said the relief of the Pulupandan police force was also approved by the Comelec. They were replaced by troopers of the Public Safety Company of the police provincial office.

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: Crime , News , police abuses , police corruption , Regions

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


  • 4.6-magnitude quake hits Surigao del Norte
  • Camilla’s brother dies of NYC head injury
  • Nepal officials go to Everest to try to end crisis
  • Escudero ready to defend self should name appear in Napoles’ list
  • Obama calls for peaceful end to island dispute
  • Sports

  • Promoters Dela Hoya, Arum in talks for Pacquiao-Alvarez—report
  • Benzema guides Madrid to 1-0 win over Bayern
  • Suns’ Goran Dragic win NBA’s Most Improved Player award
  • Heat go up 2-0, hold off Bobcats 101-97
  • Ronaldo shakes off injury fears to play Bayern
  • Lifestyle

  • 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
  • The best flavors of summer in one bite, and more
  • Entertainment

  • Has Ai Ai fallen deeply with ‘sireno?’
  • Sony developing live-action Barbie comedy
  • California court won’t review Jackson doctor case
  • Return of ‘Ibong Adarna’
  • Practical Phytos plans his future
  • Business

  • Facebook profits triple as mobile soars
  • Insular Honors Sales Performers at Testimonial Rites
  • Apple increases stock buyback, will split stock
  • Cost-recovery provisions for affected gencos urged
  • This time, BIR goes after florists
  • 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

  • PH-HK relations repaired, but families of victims still being courted
  • Filipinos in Middle East urged to get clearance before returning
  • PH seeks ‘clearer assurance’ from US
  • China and rivals sign naval pact to ease maritime tensions
  • What Went Before: Manila bus hostage crisis
  • Marketplace