Baguio mayor still cold to OIC police director

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Thursday, March 6, 2014

REMOVING Baguio City Police director Senior Superintendent Jesus Cambay Jr. and replacing him with Senior Superintendent Rolando Miranda in an acting capacity illegally circumvents the law.

This was stressed by Mayor Mauricio Domogan Wednesday when asked for a reaction to the Police Regional Office-Cordillera action to relieve Cambay of his duties as city director.

Domogan stressed this violates Republic Act 6975 giving the local chief executive control and supervision of police forces in the city.


Mayor Domogan questioned the essence of the existing law if this will only be disregarded by reshuffling the chosen police director without even the consent of the local chief executive.

Mayor Domogan said he wrote a letter to PRO-Cordillera director Chief Superintendent Isagani Nerez requesting the immediate recall of Miranda and reinstate Cambay as city director. He also asked in the letter for the regional command to initiate the process by submitting five names of eligible policemen for proper screening and evaluation by a committee to be the next city director.

"Sabi natin sa ating letter, sana naman they should also listen to our assessment dahil ka-partner nila tayo sa maintenance of peace and order because the city is providing a substantial budget also for police operations at maliwanag naman sa batas that it is the city’s chief executive who appoints the police city director," he said.

While asking this must not be construed as the city government’s defiance to the police, he implored for ProCor to reconsider their assessment of Cambay’s performance.

“Bakit hindi nila tanungin din ang assessment ng local government? Sila lang ba ang tama ang assessment? Yun ang problema dito dapat may justifiable reason bago ilipat [si Cambay],” he said.

Domogan stressed there is no reason to replace Cambay explaining a disparity in crime statistics gathering after the PNP changed its system in 2012. He added all department heads including his office are satisfied with Cambay’s performance as police chief.

The views of the city mayor was also backed by several city councilors, city department heads, businessmen, and even barangay tanods who made resolutions calling to retain Cambay in office.

But Domogan stressed sad as he is about this recent move by the police regional office he does not wish to quarrel with the police any longer.
“If PRO-Cordillera cannot recognize and reconsider the city’s assessment of Cambay all that the local government wants is for PRO-Cordillera to submit names of eligible recommendees from which we could choose the next city director,” he stressed.

He added a police director in an acting capacity only circumvents the law stressing there must be a permanent city director addressing peace and order concerns in the city.

The mayor stressed without discriminating the origins of the policemen, the chief of police must at least be a resident of Baguio or at least the region, available 24 hours a day and seven days a week to serve the people.

He added a selection committee was formed to scrutinize records, achievements and conducted interviews of the potential city police directors before Cambay was chosen in 2012.

In a courtesy call by OIC-Director Miranda Thursday morning, Domogan again reiterated this process.

Miranda, meantime, introduced himself to the city mayor and manifested he will fully support peace and order initiatives of the local government.

But the mayor only remained firm in his position on the acting police chief’s appointment.

In an interview by Sun.Star Baguio after his courtesy call, Miranda said the mayor indeed has full authority in appointing the police city director which must undergo a screening process but hopes he will be given a chance to prove his competence.

The newly assumed acting director, who hails from Bulacan province, also said he will only abide by the orders of his superiors from the police regional office if he will be recalled or will remain in his acting capacity as police director.

Published in the Sun.Star Baguio newspaper on March 07, 2014.

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