Albayalde tells militant solons: You quit, not me
Reacting to calls for his resignation over the recent deaths of 14 farmers in Negros Oriental, Police Gen. Oscar Albayalde on Thursday dared his critics to apply the same standards on themselves.
“Let me express this: That in the name of deliquadeza (sic), which is obviously not [among these lawmakers’] moral virtues, they themselves should have resigned long ago while enjoying the perks and privileges shouldered by the Filipino people,” Albayalde said in a statement.
The Makabayan bloc in the House of Representatives on Wednesday called for Albayalde’s removal as chief of the Philippine National Police over the killings of 14 farmers.
The police claimed that the dead were actually communist rebels and supporters who violently resisted arrest and were killed in separate shootouts.
The call for his removal over the killings was baseless, Albayalde said.
“I swiftly ordered the administrative relief of the provincial director of Negros Oriental Police Provincial Office (Noppo) and three police chiefs in the province to pave the way [for] a thorough investigation of the incidents,” he said.
Relieved were Police Col. Raul Tacaca, director of Noppo; Lt. Col. Patricio Degay, chief of Canlaon City police; Lt. Kevin Roy Mamaraldo, chief of Manjuyod town police, and Capt. Michael Rubia, chief of Sta. Catalina town police.
Albayalde said the calls for his removal was proof that there were “sympathizers who are in power [but are] supporting the leftist movement and its vain provision to dismantle and overthrow a constitutionally elected government.”
On the evening of March 30, police with search warrants separately raided the homes of the 14 farmers in an anticrime operation.
Police claimed they found guns and bullets in the farmers’ homes.
“I assure [the public] that this corresponding investigation by the PNP Internal Affairs Service is deemed in the ambit of fairness, truth and justice whatever results [it] may divulge,” Albayalde said.
The investigation will determine if there were lapses in police operating procedures during the operations, he added.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.