BACOLOD CITY – Col. Thomas Joseph Martir took over as acting director of the Bacolod City Police Office (BCPO) on Friday afternoon, following the relief of Col. Manuel Placido a year after he was assigned as police chief here.
The turnover of command was led by Brig. Gen. Rolando Miranda, director of the Police Regional Office 6 (Western Visayas), in the presence of Mayor Evelio Leonardia, in rites held at the BCPO headquarters.
“As I embark on a new chapter of my life by accepting the challenge of assuming the duties and responsibilities as head of (the) Bacolod police, I would like to begin by honoring the God Almighty. I’m thanking him for the opportunity to lead the BCPO and imploring the Divine guidance as I carry out my obligations as acting city director,” Martir said.
The Bacolod native said his appointment as city police chief brings him back to where he began more than two decades ago, where he first became the commander of Police Station 4 and head of the City Drug Enforcement Unit, and later as commander of Police Station 2 and operations chief of the BCPO.
A graduate of the Philippine National Police (PNP) Academy Class of 1994, Martir was an officer at the Police Security and Protection Group in Camp Crame before he was reassigned to Bacolod.
His previous assignments include being chief of the Talisay City Police Station in Negros Occidental, commander of the defunct Regional Mobile Force Battalion – Negros Island Region, and director of the Zamboanga City Police Office.
“We must give our full support to Col. Martir. He is a good guy. He is a good police officer,” Miranda said.
He added that Martir has an advantage because being familiar with one’s place of assignment is very important.
Meanwhile, Placido said in May, he had asked to be reassigned back to Luzon, particularly to the PNP main headquarters or in a place near his family, because they need his presence most at this time.
“My greatest gratitude to Mayor Evelio Leonardia for the acceptance. I’m really honored that in less than a month, you signed my acceptance letter,” he said.
During his stint as city police chief, Placido was able to seal agreements with various private individuals or groups who donated lands for several police stations and was able to initiate improvements in the facilities of the BCPO headquarters, including the construction of the tallest flagpole in the city.
Based on the order of PNP Chief, Gen. Guillermo Eleazar, effective October 1, Placido has been reassigned to the Explosive Ordnance Disposal and K9 Group at the national headquarters. (PNA)