Bato: ‘No mercy’ for those firing guns to ring in New Year
Philippine National Police chief Director General Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa on Tuesday said he will show no mercy to people indiscriminately firing guns, including policemen, during the New Year revelry.
Citing the Doctrine of Hot Pursuit, Dela Rosa authorized patrolling policemen to go inside houses should they hear gunshots and arrest those indiscriminately firing guns. Should homeowners bar them from entering, Dela Rosa ordered the police to “break in or jump over.”
“We want zero casualty this New Year revelry. This is a fair warning to everyone. Gusto n’yo ng pagbabago, magbago na po tayo. Ipakita natin sa buong mundo na ang Pilipino, disiplinado (If you want change, let’s change. Let’s show the whole world that Filipinos are disciplined) … We appeal to everyone. Maawa naman kayo sa mga matatamaan ng balang pinaputok n’yo (Think about those who may be hit of your stray bullets),” Dela Rosa said in a press conference in Camp Crame.
“Kapag kayo ay nakarinig ng putok sa loob ng isang bahay, please magresponde kayo. Puntahan ninyo. Katukin n’yo ang pamamahay. Dapat you are in proper uniform at may patrol car kayo… In the regular performance of your duty, meron talagang masagasaan. Ang pulis na walang kaso, ‘yun ang pulis na hindi nagtatrabaho,” he told the police.
(If you hear the sound of gunshot, respond and go to the house. Knock, but make sure that you are in proper uniform and using a patrol car. In the regular performance of your duty, you will really encounter conflicts. A cop who is never sued is a cop who does not do his job.)
For the first time in years, the PNP will break its annual tradition of sealing the cops’ gun muzzles to prevent indiscriminate firing in the holiday revelries. Dela Rosa said the directive was to show that he has trust in the police.
But the PNP chief said he would not be forgiving should his own men get involved in indiscriminate firing. “Mag-ingat kayong mga pulis na nagpapaputok. Wala akong patawad kapag kayo’y nahuli,” he said.
(To the police who will fire their guns, you have been warned. I will not forgive you if you are arrested.)
Dela Rosa added that he will relieve police chiefs or station commanders who will fail to arrest those indiscriminately firing in their areas within 24 hours of the incident.
He said policemen will have no holiday break during the New Year revelry, adding that barangay (village) officials should also patrol with the PNP.
“They have enough time to be with their family before 5 a.m. Forget muna your family. Focus on your duty. Para sa bayan muna ‘yung 12 hours na ‘yan (Offer those 12 hours to the country),” Dela Rosa added.
As of Monday morning, at least seven persons have been arrested for indiscriminate firing across the country based on PNP data. IDl/rga
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