“No one should be above the law. Not even those who enforce it. Not even the president. “
Months ago, a lot of people were surprised with the way our incumbent President Rodrigo Duterte showed his utmost respect and trust to our law enforcement officers. He even stated that he wanted to uplift the perception of the Filipino people to their Philippine National Police and Philippine Army.
In fact, October 2016 when he approved the incentive and combat pay for these uniformed men in consonance with the constitutional requirement for the state to provide remuneration and benefits to the armed forces to ensure their professionalism and loyalty. He understands the sacrifices that they do for the entire Philippine nation.
However, things have drastically changed when the issue on rogue cops and the killing of the South Korean businessman Jee Ick Joo. The question that is running through the heads of the many is the way he treats and punished these men. Was he unfair and unjust? Was he overreacting? I don’t think so. We have seen how angry he was while talking to the rouge cops during his speech last February 07, 2017.
“Prepare to move out. I’ll give you two weeks from now, 15 days. Mag-ano na kayo. Start to move out. If you do not want to go there, go to your superior officer and tell them that you’re going to resign. Otherwise, ayaw ninyo hanapan ko kayo ng mali. Kasi kaya kayo nandito mga g*** kayo eh. So meron talaga akong masilip. Either I will dismiss you,” he said, adding they would be his new “Task Force South.”
Duterte said he had initially thought of throwing the errant cops to tend to the Pasig River but acknowledged that human rights groups are watching him. He then thought of ordering the cops to help clean up the river or even to drink from the polluted river as part of disciplinary measures.
He added, however, said that since some of the errant cops are still young and he needed to augment forces in Basilan, he should just deploy them there.
“Bata pa naman kayo lahat. Kailangan ko ng pulis sa South. Kulang ang pulis sa Basilan kasi maya’t-maya pinagpaputok-putok ‘yung mga istasyon doon. Nauubos. Kayo lahat ngayon nandito, kasali kayo sa Task Force South. Padala ko kayo sa Basilan. Tumira kayo doon ng mga dalawang taon,” he said.
The President, being the father of this country is only doing what he thinks is right for the entire Filipino nation. There are hundreds of other issues that the current administration is fighting up against. Issues which already exists decades ago.
Did the previous administrations give it just attention? No. The issue on rogue cops is nothing new. Yes, unfortunately, they have been long there ever since. The only difference is, we now have a president who is willing to punish those who deserve punishment regardless if it is his men in uniform.