Palace: Duterte won’t meddle in probe vs cops in Espinosa slay
President Rodrigo Duterte will not interfere in any investigation against members of the Philippine National Police (PNP), Malacañang said on Thursday.
Communications Secretary Martin Andanar issued the statement a day after Duterte said he would not allow policemen involved in the killing of Albuera town mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. to go to jail.
“It should not be misinterpreted to mean that the President will intervene in investigations or any legal proceedings in order to exculpate erring cops,” Andanar said in a statement.
“What should be underscored is the very clear statement of the President that while he continues to adhere to the presumption of regularity in the PNP’s performance of its duties, he states in no uncertain terms that he will not interfere with any legal proceeding which will be brought against some members of the police force who are suspected of wrongdoing,” he added.
The Palace official said Duterte’s statement was only meant to boost the morale of police forces.
“The recent pronouncements of the President pertaining to the PNP, standing by his men, are critical to maintaining their high morale, with the end in view of succeeding in the anti-drug campaign,” he said.
Andanar echoed the President’s statement, saying “the NBI should file cases against those who they deemed to have violated laws, and that he would not intervene in these proceedings.”
The President, he said, “respects and upholds the constitutional rights of our people to voice out grievances and even dissent against the policies and decisions of the administration.”
“However, the President will not condone any unlawful move to wrest power from all duly elected officials of the government, including himself, who carry the mandate not only of the Filipinos who voted for them, but also of all Filipinos who firmly believe in the ideals of democracy and the rule of law. Any such ploy beyond the bounds of the law shall not be tolerated,” he said. CDG/rga