Monday, March 6, 2017

Sorsogon camp development to erase past blots in police image, says province’s police chief
By Bobby Q. Labalan

SORSOGON CITY, March 4 (PNA) -- A top official of the Sorsogon Provincial Police Office (PPO) thanked Senator Francis Escudero for his initiatives in helping give a facelift to the police headquarters inside Camp Salvador Escudero Sr. here.

Sr. Supt. Ronaldo Cabral, director of Sorsogon PPO, in an interview Saturday, made the gesture following Friday’s groundbreaking of a Php 70-million three-story building inside the one-and-a half hectare camp compound that would serve as the new home of the provincial police force.

Sorsogon’s police chief said a budget of Php 107 million was allotted for the entire camp development plan.

“Dismantling the Philippine Constabulary (PC)-era buildings would finally eliminate the vestiges of the period in history which gave a bad image to the police force,” said Cabral.

Officers and men of the PC, as how today’s PNP was known, had been tagged as suspects in many human rights abuses attributed to the administration of deposed President Ferdinand Marcos who declared Martial Law in 1972.

In past months revival of the PC had been considered by the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte but there has yet to be concrete measures that would support the declaration.

Amid some drizzles Friday, Escudero led the groundbreaking ceremony together with Bicol Police Director Melvin Buenafe, Sorsogon Gov. Robert Lee Rodrigueza, Cabral, Representative Deogracias Ramos (Sorsogon- 2nd District) and Supreme Court Administrator Justice Midas Marquez and his deputy, Raul Villanueva.

They lowered the time capsule containing details of the camp development plan, which would include living quarters for policemen assigned to the province but living in remote municipalities.

Escudero had said he initiated the total development of the camp “to give the police a better place to work in so that they would be more inspired to perform their duties and responsibilities.”

Addressing the members of the police force, the senator said the renovation of the camp would augur well for the peace and order of the province.

He assured the provincial police of his continued support to enable them to better perform their tasks of securing the public.

Escudero's initiative reaped praises both from Rodrigueza, Buenafe and Cabral who said that the move would further enhance the PNP’s image in the province.

In January, the Sorsogon PPO was cited by top officials of PRO5 for being the best performer among the PPOs in Bicol as it showed the lowest crime rate record in 2016 that was attributed to its effective community relations program.

Meanwhile in his message, Buenafe said that Escudero’s move showed his great concern for the well-being of the police force.

Buenafe thanked the senator for looking after the needs of the PNP as he noted that Escudero had previously initiated actions that benefitted the police organization.

“Aside from the administration and crime lab building and the officers’ quarters, all the edifices inside the camp have seen better days,” said Cabral.

He said upgrading the facilities inside the camp will give it a total facelift which would improve police image and dignity.

The camp was named after the senator’s grandfather who was a guerrilla leader during the Japanese occupation and a former governor of the province. (PNA) RMA/GVR/BQL/CBD/RSM