By Vince Angelo C. Ferreras
PHILIPPINE NATIONAL Police (PNP) Chief Director-General Oscar D. Albayalde has approved a limited reshuffle of 1,370 police officers who are related to politicians running this midterm elections.
The PNP also ordered the resignation of five police officers who are seeking elective posts and have accordingly filed certificates of candidacy.
“As (the) non-partisan and deputized law enforcement agency of the Commission on Elections, we strongly and firmly remain faithful to our apolitical mandate to ensure and protect the will of the electorate towards honest, orderly and peaceful elections,” Mr. Albayalde said in a statement on Wednesday, March 6.
The limited reshuffle policy is an administrative measure to help ensure impartiality among police personnel especially in areas where they have relatives who are vying for elective posts.
The said policy was also applied to 121 provincial directors, city directors, mobile force commanders, and chiefs of police who have reached the maximum two years tour of duty in their assignments.
PNP noted there are 1,858 of its personnel who are related to politicians running this midterm elections. Of that total, 488 are assigned to areas where they have no such relatives and are thus kept to their present assignments.
Those reassigned were 26 commissioned officers and 1,344 non-commissioned officers.
Of the five police officers seeking public office, whom the PNP did not identify, one is running for vice-mayor and the others for municipal councilors in the provinces of Bukidnon, Surigao del Norte, Northern Samar, Lanao del Sur, and Zamboanga del Sur.
Commission on Elections Resolution No. 10420 Section 24 states that “any person holding a public appointed office or position, including those in uniformed service, shall be considered ipso facto resigned from the office and must vacate the same at the start of the day of the filing of COC.”