Albayalde denies 'ninja cops' his men

Oscar D. Albayalde
Albayalde: I’m innocent

PHILIPPINE National Police chief General Oscar Albayalde yesterday denied that Major Rodney Baloyo IV and the other 12 police officers involved in the controversial November 2013 buy-bust operation were his “bata” or loyal men.

During the resumption of the Senate hearing, Albayalde said when he was assigned to head the Pampanga Provincial Police Office on May 1, 2013, Baloyo and the other police officers were already there.

He further said that he would have wanted to install Superintendent Raquel Linggayu as Pampanga intelligence chief but the post was then occupied by Baloyo.

“When I was assigned in Pampanga wala akong bitbit (na tao). Just to make things clear kasi parang may notion na bitbit ko ang mga tao na ito from the very beginning,” he said.

He also said that the 13 Pampanga police officers were not his “bata.”

“Bata is a general term used sa mga tao. Kapag sinabing batang sarado ‘yan ay bitbit ko from the very beginning,” Albayalde explained.

Albayalde further said that he was not charged either criminally or administratively after he was relieved from his post due to the buy-bust operation led by Baloyo.

“Way back 2013, the case was investigated, I was investigated, I was relieved administratively. I was floating for eight months, after investigation very clear naman na walang nakita kasi I was never charged, both criminally and administratively,” he said.

Then Region 3 police chief Raul Petrasanta confirmed Albayalde’s claim when asked by Senator Panfilo Lacson.

“Nung kinreate ‘yung summary hearing board ‘yung grupo lang ni Balayo ang kasama, hindi nabanggit sa investigation si Albayalde,” said Petrasanta.

Senator Richard Gordon, committee chairman, then repeatedly asked why Albayalde did not question his relief, to which the latter replied that he was just following the orders of his superiors.

“You just follow orders and wait for the right timing until I was able to get another post. You cannot make a motion when you are in a floating status, it is part of the service. Kaya tayo nagre-relieve to give way to the investigation,” Albayalde said as answer to Gordon.

Lacson, a former PNP chief, agreed with Albayalde.

“Not to defend General Albayalde ... part of the training, basic principles of PMA (Philippine Military Academy), he who does not obey is not fit to command. We follow… I beg your indulgence, culture sa military and police ang aming kinagisnan: We never question why we [are] relieved. We never question our superior officers. No such thing in the military or police organization,” he said.

Another accuser

Meanwhile, retired General Rudy Lacadin joined Albayalde’s accusers and told the hearing that the PNP chief also called him and asked about the probe into the 2013 controversial drug sting conducted by 13 Pampanga police officers.

According to Lacadin, Albayalde said to him “Kaunti lang naman ang napunta sa akin dyan.”

Albayalde was quick to deny Lacadin’s allegation, complaining that there seems to be a “conspiracy” to “gang up” on him.

“I really don’t know kung ano ‘yung conspiracy dito. It seems that everybody is ganging up on me. It’s very unlikely naman na General Lacadin ay sasabihan ko siya,” the PNP chief said.

“Hindi ko po alam kung ano yung against nya sa akin, pero kung sabihin mong sinabi ko yun, ang tanong ko uli, why was I not charged?” he said.