Año tells off SPD chief: You can’t just grab someone else’s phone
MANILA, Philippines — Interior Secretary Eduardo Año on Friday admonished Southern Police District (SPD) director Brig. Gen. Nolasco Bathan for snatching a news reporter’s cellphone during January 9’s Traslacion of the Black Nazarene.
Speaking to reporters in Baguio City, Año promised to let appropriate sanction fall on Bathan should his liability on the incident be proven.
“He should not have done that. Kahit na hindi ‘yan si Jun Veneracion, kahit ordinaryong tao lang ‘yan, hindi pwede ‘yung ganun na basta kukunin mo ‘yung cellphone, hahablutin mo. Hindi ‘yan kasama sa dapat gawin ng isang police officer,” he said.
(He should not have done that. Even if that was not Jun Veneracion and it was an ordinary person, you cannot just take away a cellphone, grab it. That’s not the appropriate conduct of a police officer.)
A video of Año’s interview was posted by GMA News on Twitter.
In a text message to INQUIRER.net, Año said he would first wait for the result of the investigation being conducted by the Philippine National Police (PNP) before taking the next steps on the SPD chief.
The Regional Internal Affairs Service of the National Capital Region Police Office is in charge of the investigation.
“It has been my guidance that police officers should respect the rights of the citizens and discharge their duties properly and in accordance with the law,” said Año, who was recently tasked by President Rodrigo Duterte to supervise the PNP in the absence of a chief.
Bathan has already apologized to GMA 7 reporter Jun Veneracion. He admitted confiscating the cellphone but denied ordering to have the video deleted. He also said he did not recognize the reporter.
But in the allegedly deleted video – which was later restored – a man was heard ordering someone to delete the footage.
“‘Burahin mo, burahin mo kuha ni Jun Veneracion. Put***-ina, nagku-kwan eh,’” the man said.
Edited by KGA
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