Why Purisima needs a spokesperson
MANILA, Philippines – Senior Superintendent Robert Po is the new spokesperson of embattled Director General Alan Purisima.
Purisima is the first PNP chief to have a spokesperson dedicated to his office.
Po replaced Senior Superintendent Wilben Mayor who stood as acting spokesperson of the Philippine National Police (PNP) chief .
Before Mayor, Chief Superintendent Generoso Cerbo, then Senior Superintendent, was the spokesperson of Purisima.
Mayor will go fulltime as spokesperson for the entire police force and chief of the Public Information Office.
Po will speak in behalf of the PNP chief on issues about his directives and enforcement matters.
The PNP chief’s spokesperson is also expected to provide the media first incident reports, or initial reports of crimes in the country.
Purisima has been linked to a number of plunder, graft and indirect bribery charges over his alleged “mansion” in San Leonardo, Nueva Ecija, the P12-million construction of his “white house” residence in Crame and the spurious P100-million contract he entered with a courier service for firearms licenses delivery.
In an interview with INQUIRER.net, Mayor clarified the delineation of duties of the PNP chief’s spokesperson. He said the primary role of the spokesperson of the PNP chief is to make the PNP chief “more accessible to the media.”
“But having a spokesperson for the PNP chief doesn’t mean that he wouldn’t face the media anymore,” he added.
“A spokesman for the PNP chief also speaks in behalf of him regarding his stand on particular issues, say when he’s out of the country. We know that the schedule of the PNP chief is really loaded,” he said.
Po graduated in 1995 from Philippine National Police Academy (PNPA).
He will also serve as the deputy PNP PIO chief.
Before reporting to Purisima, Po served as the assistant chief of the Firearms and Explosives Office (FEO) in Camp Crame.
Since 2010, Po had been assigned at the Manila Police District (MPD), holding office in its headquarters in Ermita, Manila.
He served as the Manila Police’s officer-in-charge and ended his stint there when Mayor Joseph Estrada became the City Mayor in 2013.
“The PNP chief has his confidence in me that I can perform my jobs and responsibilities,” he said.