MANILA – Senator JV Ejercito on Monday proposed the relief of the entire police force in Region 7 (Central Visayas), which has jurisdiction over Negros Oriental, the province that Roel Degamo served as governor and where he was slain by a group of armed men who stormed his residential compound.
This, after Ejercito found out that five out of six police escorts of Degamo did not report to work on the day of the governor’s assassination.
“Nakikita natin dito parang compromised na yung region at provincial police offices (We are seeing that it seems like the regional and provincial police offices are already compromised),” Ejercito told Senate reporters citing a report that some of the police officers there refuse to serve warrants.
“So, kinakailangan pang magpadala galing dito sa (we still need to send someone from here in the) headquarters,” he added.
Ejercito said the Philippine National Police (PNP) leadership plans to do the “cleansing” by waves which he said was already done before.
Meanwhile, the lawmaker said he agrees with Senator Ronald Dela Rosa who said the Senate should investigate the Degamo slay after the authorities arrest all the suspects and the mastermind.
“Siguro, hayaan muna natin ang (Maybe, we should let the) authorities to do their job. PNP, NBI [National Bureau of Investigation], DOJ [Department of Justice] before we go into it,” Ejercito said.
In a press conference, PNP chief Gen. Rodolfo Azurin Jr. assured that the government remains in control of the peace and order situation in Negros Oriental as the investigation into the killing of Degamo and pursuit operations against his killers continue.
Azurin said he plans to call the five of the six police escorts of Degamo to explain why they were not on duty when the attack happened explaining at the same time that security escorts often operate in shifts.
The PNP provincial director for Negros Oriental and the regional director PNP Central Visayas, the PNP chief said, will also be asked to explain. (PNA)