Press Statement of PCSUPT ROMULO E SAPITULA
Regional Director, Police Regional Office 1
Issue on the recall of the security escorts of Former Congressman EufranioEriguel
May 30, 2018/ PRO1 Headquarters
Good day ladies and gentlemen!
First of all, I would like to express my deepest sympathy to the bereaved family of the late former congressman EufranioC Eriguel, may the comfort of our God be with you and may you be consoled by the outpouring support of our kakailians!
The PNP leadership of Police Regional Office 1 and the whole PNP as well, condemned in the strongest manner the brutal killing of the former lawmaker.
In response to the privilege speech of Congresswoman Sandra Eriguelon May 28, 2018, at the House of the Representatives wherein she blamed the police particularly the PRO1 leadership as responsible in the recall of the police personnel detailed as their protective security, I would like to emphasize that the PNP Region 1 never recalled security escort of the late Eriguel, the fact that we never detail police personnel as his protective security, because he is not entitled to it. First, he is not an incumbent public official. Second, he is identified as Narco-Politics by no less than the President of the Philippines Rodrigo RoaDuterte. Third, no written request for protective security was received by this office. We only recalled the police escorts of Congresswoman Sandra Eriguel and Mayor Stefanie Ann Eriguel and these personnel were detailedfor them as a matter of courtesy and not a policy. Furthermore, the policy is that the Police Security and Protection Group (PSPG) of the PNP who is the one in- charge of providing security protection for the VIPs and qualified personalities.
We honestly say, that as much as our office desired to prevent the recall of the police personnel, we are duty-bound to do so in compliance with the PNP National Headquarters’ directive.
Furthermore, while we share with the sentiments of the Eriguel family, and as Regional Director of the Region 1 police, we are also mandated to implement any legal orders to that effect, where the security maybe recalled or terminated anytime or even before the expiration of the detail when the demands of the PNP so requires which holds true during the election period.
During our series of conferences with the COMELEC and AFP in Region 1, we discovered that we lack about a thousand personnel to man the voting places and the detail of these security personnel to election duties is one of the noblesttasks which is to secure the rights of the people to suffrage.
With respect to the allegation that Police Chief Inspector Alfredo D Padilla Jr., then the Agoo Chief of Police failed to dispatch security detail at the Meeting de Avance at Barangay Capas, Agoo, La Union is now one of the matters being investigated by the SITG Eriguel.
For now, this is not the time offinger-pointing, for this will not help in the speedy resolution of the case. What we need now is the concerted effort of every concerned individual.It is the desire of this leadership to resolve this case as early as possible to give justice to the victims.
Thank you very much!