Amid issue on ‘ninja cops,’ Albayalde says no relief order from Duterte
MANILA, Philippines — Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Oscar Albayalde dismissed as rumors that President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered his relief as the country’s top cop amid murmurs that he could be one of the ranking officials linked to recycling drugs.
“That’s all chismis (gossip). Wala po ‘yun (There is no relief order),” Albayalde told reporters during the turnover of jurisdiction of the Philippine National Police Academy to the PNP at Camp General Mariano Castañeda in Silang, Cavite.
Albayalde said he already spoke with Duterte, after speculation swirled that he could be one of the names mentioned by former director of the police Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) Benjamin Magalong in an executive session at the Senate on “ninja cops” or police officers recycling seized drugs.
He said he also briefed the President on the status of the “ninja cops,” which he earlier revealed was down to 22, and of the war against drugs.
He added he is not sure as to why he is being dragged into the issue, which is supposedly linked to his relief as Pampanga police director in 2014 over an alleged irregular anti-drug operation.
“Hopefully this is not about politics. Ever since noon pa (before), we would like the PNP to be isolated from politics,” said Albayalde, who also admitted that even ranking officials are all “expendable.”
Albayalde is set to attend a hearing of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee on Tuesday as the upper chamber investigates police officers allegedly involved in the reselling of drugs seized in operations. Senator Richard Gordon, committee chair, said Albayalde was invited in the hearing as PNP chief./ac
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.