Despite pronouncements that PNP values life and human rights, statistics say that more than 60% of the population believe our policemen are involved in EJK and are engaged in the illegal drug trade—this is according to the SWS (Social Weather Stations) survey done in December 2018.
And just as PNP Chief Police General Oscar Albayalde finished explaining how the independent pollster should frame a particular question in the same survey—so that 78% of Filipinos (up by 5 points since the survey was done in June 2017) wouldn’t say they’re afraid of dying in the hands of authorities without legal process—came the news on Pasay cops caught through an entrapment operation after demanding money from a drug suspect in exchange for the latter’s freedom.
Actually, only one was captured, the others got away. (How and why is another story.)
True to form, the disciplinarian General Albayalde vowing to do internal cleansing in his agency when he came in last year, ordered the relief of Eastern Police District director Brigadier General Bernabe Balba and Pasay City Police Station commander Colonel Noel Flores. Though these two officers are with good records, the police chief, who is said to have been chosen by President Rodrigo Duterte as Dela Rosa’s successor for his strictness, couldn’t tolerate men sleeping in their jobs.
ENTER P.A.T.R.O.L. PLAN 2030
This damaging image of law enforcers has been nagging the agency and it was probably at its lowest in 2013 when the anti-corruption watchdog Transparency International came and found the PNP garnering 69% as the most corrupt institution according to public perception.
Something must be done. PNP’s answer is the P.A.T.R.O.L. Plan 2030 or Peace and Order Agenda for Transformation of Law—a long-term program that aims for a highly capable, effective, and credible police service by the said year. It is the police force’s change agenda—a remedy to deal with the prevalent problems hounding the police force, especially those that have resulted in the public’s dismay with our country’s law enforcers, if not a total loss of confidence in them.
On October 22, 2018, the PNP and its team of advisers presented the program at the Bulong Pulungan, the media forum in Sofitel Manila.
THE ROLE OF ADVISORY COUNCILS
Local governments play a key role in the PNP enhancement program. To ensure
its success, the PNP formed the National Advisory Group for Police Transformation and Development (NAGPTD), or NAG for short, which has set various Advisory Councils comprised of sectoral leaders, experts, and highly accomplished individuals chosen for their integrity, probity, and leadership from various cities and municipalities.
Prudencio Gesta, NAG chairman, says the Advisory Councils—composed of 16,000 people across all levels of the organization, from the national level down to the municipal police stations—provide the PNP insights and new perspectives to guide the organization on its management decisions. It also has an important watchdog-oversight role, helping to ensure transparency and accountability in the police service. Moreover, each Council provides feedback on the performance level of the PNP, and, at the same time, help the agency to move toward the attainment of its vision.
UNDERSTANDING THE PLAN
Angel Redoble, NAGPTD vice chairman for External Affairs, said the PNP based the Plan on the Performance Governance System (PGS), a management system using the Balanced Scorecard System (BSC) Framework that was developed way back in the 1990s by Robert Kaplan and David Norton, two professors at the Harvard Business School.
Kaplan and Norton noted that a major problem of business establishments is that the managers base their decisions and policies only on financial measures—that is, whether the policies will result in profits for their company. But it is not enough to base an establishment’s decisions solely on financial gains.
Nor does ample financial remuneration assure that employees will cooperate and give their best to fulfill their company’s goals. Case in point: police scalawags continue to pester the PNP organization despite the salary increases and other benefits already provided for them by President Duterte.
With the BSC, the PNP is able to set its goals and the transparent reporting enables the agency to monitor the activities of its policemen and ensure everyone is performing according to the Plan.
Police Senior Superintendent Noel Baraceros, director of the PNP Center for Police Strategy Management (CPSM), said the Plan defines how the PNP effectively and efficiently delivers its mandate through human rights-based and community-oriented policing.
HANDLING CASES OF ERRING PERSONNEL
“We talk to them, we give them a chance to air their side,” said PC Superintendent Ercy Nanette Madriaga, chief of the Organization Alignment Division of the Center for Police Strategy Management, on handling cases of cops who have gone astray.
The investigation process is part of the Performance Governance System on which the Plan is anchored.
Even if an errant policeman is transferred to another department or area in the country, he brings with him his Scorecard—meaning, his performance continues to be monitored and evaluated to make sure he is working in accordance with the change agenda of Plan.
A GLIMMER OF HOPE
Margie Juico, PSCO’s former chair, and now NAG treasurer, is hopeful for a change of culture in the PNP. With the Plan in place and with the support from the local government and the community, the dream of one day having highly capable, effective, and credible police force doesn’t seem that far-fetched.
She adds, “It’s a privilege to serve the PNP as a payback to the community.”
That’s probably why the previous attempts to put on a good cop image have not been successful. The key is to involve the community to be part of this change. The community has to work hand in hand with our uniformed personnel and police the police.
Then, it wouldn’t be surprising to hear the likes of PC Superintendent (retired) Rex Milton Dolino, NAG vice chairman for Internal Affairs, who observed that people relatively have high regard for the country’s police force. He said, “I’ve gone around the provinces and I’ve seen that people there love their police.” — CYNTHIA U. SANTIAGO AND RHODA OSALVO
What Comprises the PNP P.A.T.R.O.L. Plan 2030:
- Extensive consultation, dialogue, inter-faith, and multicultural mitigation—thus the establishment of the Advisory Councils
- Enhancing competencies, skills and capacity units and personnel
- Improving and integrating into the PNP systems and procedures
- Filling up required logistical and other enabling resources
- Enhancing investigative capabilities through progressive training and certification of investigations
Improving the collection, handling, and processing of evidence using scientific and modern technologies
- Strengthening coordination and collaboration with other pillars of the criminal justice system and other law enforcement agencies