IT’s certainly one of the cruelest ironies of our time that the 175,000-strong Philippine National Police (PNP), the country’s premier law enforcement agency which is civilian in nature but national in scope, does not train its future officers and men.
At present, it is the Philippine Public Safety College (PPSC) that administers the public safety basic recruit course through the Philippine National Police Academy (PNPA), the Philippine National Training Institute (PNTI) and the National Police College (NPC).
That’s why the PNP leadership, headed by Director-General Ronald “Bato” M. dela Rosa, is hell-bent in seeking the transfer of the PNPA, PNTI, NPC and the National Forensic Science Training Institute (NFSTI) from the PPSC to the national police agency.
Since the previous Aquino administration, the PNP authorities have locked heads with officials of the PPSC over their wish to have control of the training of future men and women in police uniform.
Admittedly, the current set-up has to a large extent resulted in the graduation of poorly-trained police officers and men.
In fact, many policemen allegedly involved in anomalies and other shenanigans, such as extortion, illegal gambling, robbery and planting of evidence, are new members of the national police agency.
Expressing frustration over the apparent lack of discipline especially among rookie policemen, the hard-hitting, disciplinarian and highly-articulate PNP top honcho also expressed belief that policemen with bulging stomachs are proof of poor training.
Dela Rosa, a member of Class l986 of the elite Philippine Military Academy, made the statement during a Senate hearing on the recent death of 17-year-old Kian delos Santos.
During the hearing, Sen. Panfilo “Ping” Lacson, a former PNP chief, asked police officials if they have long-term programs aimed at preventing abuses and irregularities in police operations.
In the view of many, the proposed transfer of the PNPA, PNTI, NPC and NFSTI from the PPSC to the PNP deserves the support of the people, including the ordinary citizens.