2 Mati City cops face dismissal after testing positive for drugs
MATI CITY, Davao Oriental – Two policemen of this city have been recommended for dismissal from service after they tested positive for illegal drugs during a surprise test over the weekend, police officials on Tuesday said.
Senior Supt. Harry Espela, Davao Oriental police chief, said one of the policemen was also slapped with criminal charges after authorities found suspected paraphernalia for illegal drugs in his room.
“The surprise random drug test was part of our cleansing program within the organization,” Espela told the Philippine Daily Inquirer.
This came in the heels of pronouncements by President-elect Rodrigo Duterte against police officials allegedly involved in drugs, and the claim by communist rebels that illegal drugs had been found in the possession of a town police chief whom the insurgents had seized during a raid in Davao Oriental late last month.
Chief Insp. Andrea dela Cerna, Southern Mindanao police regional spokesperson, said SPO4 Nollo Barsaman and PO2 Jesus Mante, an intelligence operative with the Mati City police station, were found positive for methamphetamine based on laboratory examination results of urine samples taken from them.
Barsaman was immediately arrested for violation of Republic Act 9165 or Comprehensive Anti-Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002 after illegal drug paraphernalia were found inside his room at the Mati City police station, while Mante has been restricted at the police provincial holding and accounting unit (PHAU). Both were slapped with administrative charges and dismissal proceedings were being readied against them, Espela said.
“The PRO 11 under the leadership of Chief Supt. Manuel Gaerlan reminds its personnel not to engage in any illegal activities or they will face the full force of the law and the disciplinary mechanism of the PNP,” said Dela Cerna.
Quoting Gaerlan, the regional police spokesperson has assured the public the Philippine National Police does not tolerate or condone any irregularity among its ranks.
“Majority of the police officers are professional, dedicated and can be depended upon by the community,” she said. “We shall continue ridding our ranks of bad eggs and scalawags.”
Following the raid by the New People’s Army on the police station of Governor Generoso town last May 29 which led to the capture of its chief, Chief Insp. Arnold Ongachen, the rebels owned up to the attack and claimed Ongachen has been involved in drug pushing.
Dela Cerna, in a statement issued on June 3, called the NPA claim as “another propaganda attempt to justify the attack on the police facility.”
“The PNP does not tolerate or condone any of its members (who engage) in illegal activities. We welcome the investigation of Chief Inspector Ongachen as long as he is accorded due process as guaranteed under the Philippine Constitution, universal laws on human rights and international humanitarian laws…Accord him his rights as a human being,” Dela Cerna added. SFM
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