In pursuit of President Arroyo’s instructions to further strengthen the police visibility program, the Philippine National Police (PNP) will recruit 6,000 new policemen, Interior and Local Government Secretary
Jose D. Lina, Jr. said.
In an interview during the 12th anniversary celebration of the PNP in Camp Crame, Lina said that of the 6,000 additional policemen to be hired, 4,000 are alloted for this year, while 2,000 are the remaining slots for last year’s recruitment.
"We can still recruit the remaining 2,000 slots last year. So all in all, we have a target of 6,000 new policemen for this year," Lina explained, as he underscored the need to increase the number of recruits every year in order to reach the ideal ratio of one policeman for every 500 population.
He also emphasized the need to further improve police visibility as a deterrent to criminal activities. "We have to make sure that our policemen are on their beats to deter criminals, like robbers, carnappers, snatchers, from their nefarious activities."
The PNP, Lina said, will vigorously and courageously pursue reforms until a one-strong and united police organization is achieved, as an instrument of a strong republic.
He also said that the measures are now being undertaken to update the PNP training programs utilizing the latest and most modern techniques in intelligence gathering including gathering data to help ensure success in the prosecution of criminals.
Likewise, Lina said the PNP will continue to cleanse its ranks of "baggages" and scalawags that taint the image and affect the credibility of the police organization.
"We will continue the reforms outlined by President Arroyo. And scalawags should immediately be unmasked and punished accordingly," he added.
Lina bared that in line with President Arroyo’s instruction to rid the PNP of scalawags in uniform, a total of 239 PNP commissioned and non-commissioned officers were either dropped from the rolls or dismissed from the service last year. "The 239 were among the 4,447 PNP officers and personnel who were charged administratively for various offenses in 2002."
Quoting a report of the PNP Directorate for Investigation and Detective Management (DIDM), Lina said 55 of the respondent-policemen were dismissed from the service and the remaining 184 were dropped from the rolls.
Apart from the dismissal from the service of the erring personnel, another 295 were meted out with suspension, 204 withheld for their salary and 143 reprimanded. On the other hand, 670 respondents were exonerated.
The DILG Chief said that while the number of PNP personnel dismissed and
dropped from the rolls last year was higher compared to 2001 when only 216 were metedd with the same penalty, the number of those charged administrativelly was slightly lower than 2001 when 4452 lawmen were sued administratively.
The year 2002 also saw the decline in the number of lawmen charged criminally before the courts compared to the number of lawmen sued in 2001, he added.
Lina said the PNP will go on with its reform program dubbed Complan Pagbabago, in compliance with the directive of President Arroyo to instill reform in the police organization.
"The PNP is not a place for the so-called bad eggs and scalawags in uniform. We will never allow any one of them to stay in the institution a minute longer," Lina vowed.