Former Ozamiz City vice mayor Nova Princess Parojinog (with white baseball hat) being escorted by policewomen following her arrest in 2017.
I have never seen a situation so dismal that a policeman couldn’t make it worse.
— Irish playwright Brenda Behan
ACCORDING to American writer-musician Dave Willis, (policemen should) “show respect even to people who don’t deserve it; not as a reflection of their character, but as a reflection of his.” In agreement, we quote that “no matter how educated, talented, rich or cool you believe you are, how you treat people ultimately tells all; integrity is everything.”
But what the chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP) Custodial Unit has certainly show the other side to the tenet of policemen being officers and gentlemen.
The said police officer, Lieutenant Colonel Jigger Noceda was relieved from his post and slapped with a criminal complaint for allegedly sexually assaulting former Ozamiz City vice mayor Nova Princess Parojinog while in detention in Camp Crame.
Parojinog was arrested after a pre-dawn raid on July 30, 2017, where his father, former Ozamiz mayor Reynaldo Parojinog, and six others died in San Roque Lawis in Ozamiz City.
Nova Princess has since been detained at the Philippine National Police Custodial Center, facing illegal drugs and firearms possession charges.
A news report narrated that Noceda sexually attacked Parojinog twice inside his office. On June 9, Noceda allegedly kissed the former vice mayor, while on September 7 the police official purportedly touched her private parts.
It’s unimaginable (or unfortunate) that a police officer, who is two steps from being a general, could commit such an intolerable and despicable act against a woman, whom as Filipinos we should afford the proper respect and honor, as mentioned by our hero Dr. Jose Rizal.
I recall what one lowly patrolman from a station in Malate, Manila and another assigned in Divisoria told me about their superior. The former hinted to me how his commanding officer abused some of those women detained in their police station who had been arrested for mere vagrancy or bagansya in Pilipino. Most were presumed to be prostitutes, hence their vulnerability to exploitation. The “superior,” however, did not target suspected hookers but preyed on vendors, believing that in offering them immunity from arrest in their illegal livelihood, his victims would easily give in to his advances.
Both officers—the first a police colonel and the other a captain—got away with their crime because nobody complained against them. The reason is because their victims were often afraid since they were enforcers of the law and as such, they could easily turn the tables against the abused women.
But not all policemen are rogue cops and not all are sex maniacs like what we have pictured in the foregoing. PNP officials like Lt. General Guillermo Lorenzo Tolentino Eleazar and Major Rolando Lorenzo, whom I have been acquainted for quite some time now, are officers we consider as ‘officers and gentlemen’. They are the epitome of what we desire in our uniformed men—always ready “to serve and protect.”