DILG raises ‘constitutional issues’ on 1992 accord with UP
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) said Monday that there are some constitutional issues with its 1992 security agreement with the University of the Philippines (UP), which prohibits unauthorized entry of police officers in UP campuses.
The agreement between the DILG and UP is separate from the university’s 1989 accord with the Department of National Defense (DND), but both require prior notice by a commander of a military or police unit intending to conduct operation in any of UP campuses, except in cases of hot pursuit and similar emergencies, or in ordinary transit through UP premises.
“The Constitution speaks of one national police force which is civilian in character and national in scope, and some legal experts have told us that the 1992 agreement might be unconstitutional,” DILG spokesperson Jonathan Malaya said in an interview with ABS-CBN News Channel.
“But that is something that has to be determined by the court. We mentioned this to them (UP officials). So there are some constitutional issues,” he added.
According to Malaya, there are also issues on the agreement as to the implementation of certain laws.
“There are also issues related to implementation of laws which according to our legal department, contravenes laws as to the authority of the Philippine National Police (PNP), and there were also concerns as to the issues that the agreement seeks to amend the rules of court because in the service of warrants, in the conduct of custodial investigations, all of these were covered by the 1992 agreement,” he explained.
Malaya said even the name of the UP police, or the security group in the university, is also problematic.
“That’s (name of UP police) again the problem. Why call it a police if it is not really a police entity? When I was in the university, I thought they were really policemen. I thought they were part of the PNP at that time,” he said.
He said that if members of the UP police are security guards, then they should be called security guards and not police.
Even security guards, Malaya added, are supervised by the PNP through its Supervisory Office for Security Investigation Agencies.
“Before you can run a security outfit, you’ll have to get permits and be regulated by the PNP. In this case the UP Diliman police force are not in any way regulated by the PNP,” he said.
Malaya said the issues on constitutionality of the 1992 agreement will be discussed by the technical working group formed by both parties.
The review of the DILG and UP pact came after Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said the Department of the National Defense has unilaterally abrogated its 1989 agreement with the premier university, citing the supposed recruitment of communist rebels among UP students.
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