SHORT of saying that the University of the Philippines (U.P.) police lacks the competence, manpower and skill to fully address the peace and order situation in their campuses, officials on Tuesday called for a full review of the capacity of the State U’s own police force.
Commission on Higher Education chair, Dr. Prospero de Vera challenged the media to investigate the capacity of the U.P. Police to carry out basic law enforcement functions to ensure the safety and security of the entire U.P. community.
“You find out from them if they have crime statistics, go there and ask if UP residents feel they are safe,” de Vera said.
The CHED official went to Camp Crame to join an informal and exploratory dialogue among representatives from the government security sector and the academe as a confidence-building measure to foster better understanding on some pressing national issues, said Philippine National Police chief, General Oscar D. Albayalde.
Apart from Gen. Albayalde and de Vera, others who joined the meeting were Department of Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año, U.P. president, Dr. Danilo Concepcion and members of the UP Board of Regents, Polytechnic University of the Philippines president, Dr, Emmanuel De Guzman and representatives from the Ateneo de Manila University and Dela Salle University.
“We are thankful to the officials of the academe for enlightening us on academic freedom and how we can best serve the students and the academic community. We hope that today’s meeting will usher a series of dialogues and consultation to explore common ground where government and the academe can fulfill its respective mandates,” said Gen. Albayalde who was also joined by National Capital Region Police Office director, Major General Guillermo Lorenzo T. Eleazar in the meeting.
Gen. Albayalde said that during their talk, they sought to build stronger collaboration among the different stakeholders employing the “Whole of Nation” approach to protect campuses against criminal activities, drug syndicates, and shadowy organizations that promote and espouse Local Communist Armed Conflict against government thru force and violence.