PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte did not fire or replace National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) director, Major General Debold M. Sinas when he figured in a controversial ‘mañanita’ for his 55th birthday last May and instead designated him as the 25th Philippine National Police chief yesterday since he is an ‘honest, good man’ who fits his new job to a T.
The Commander-in-Chief last May even said the ‘mañanita’ for Gen. Sinas’ birthday was not his fault as his people only wanted to greet him, said PNP spokesman, Colonel Ysmael S. Yu.
The PNP spokesperson said the new PNP chief is known for his integrity and track record too. Yu said the ‘mañanita’ issue has been played up by detractors of the member of Philippine Military Academy ‘Hinirang’ Class of 1987 since he has an untarnished record and an unquestionable service record.
“You really can’t put a good man down,” Yu told the Journal Group after the Palace officially announced the designation of Sinas as the new PNP chief vice Gen. Camilo Pancratius P. Cascolan who retired yesterday at the age of 56.
“You can say that the ‘law is the law.’ That is my responsibility. But I will not order his transfer. He stays there,” the President told a Cabinet meeting last May 19, days after the ‘mañanita’ incident’ drew criticisms from netizens.
The President also justified the non-wearing of masks, saying the policemen could not possibly eat had they worn masks. He added that he looked at the merits and demerits of the case and concluded that he needs Sinas to continue serving as NCRPO chief.
“Presidential appointments are really very executive in character. It is a prerogative of the President. And he need not make any explanation for his appointment,” Presidential spokesman, Secretary Harry Roque said when asked about Duterte’s selection process.
“Nonetheless, tiningnan siyempre ni Presidente ‘yung track record ng kanyang appointee. At matagal nang sinasabi ni Presidente na talagang si bagong PNP chief Sinas ay napakalaki ng naitulong sa kaniyang war on drugs,” Roque added.
The Malacañang spokesperson said that Sinas has the full trust and confidence of the Commander-in-Chief who took note of the new PNP chief’s ‘record as an anti-drug crusader.’
“I think it was Senator (Panfilo) Lacson who said nobody is perfect but let’s also look at the achievements of the person while in service and I think that’s what happened to Gen. Sinas,” he added.
Even Department of Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo M. Año said that Sinas is highly-qualified for the position.
Sen. Ronald ‘Bato’ M. dela Rosa, himself a former PNP chief like Sen. Lacson also described Gen. Sinas as a ‘good choice’ for the top PNP post. “My advice to him: continue the internal cleansing program and sustain the gains of the PNP’s anti-drugs and anti-criminality campaign, he said.
The PNP Officers’ Corps and rank-and-file hailed President Duterte’s appointment of Sinas as the 25th PNP chief.
Sinas will be having a Command Group composed of his mistahs from PMA Class 1987: PNP Deputy Chief for Administration, Lieutenant Gen. Guillermo Lorenzo T. Eleazar; PNP Deputy Chief for Operations, Lt. Gen. Cesar Hawthorne R. Binag; and PNP Chief Directorial Staff, incoming Lt. Gen. Joselito M. Vera Cruz.
Sinas, 55, served as Regional Director of the NCRPO and the Police Regional Office 7 in Central Visayas after serving a two-year stint as Secretary of Directorial Staff at the National Headquarters. He also briefly commanded the PNP Crime Laboratory in 2018.
He also served with the PNP Criminal Investigation and Detection Group, Intelligence Group and the Police Regional Offices 12, 9, 3 and Cordillera region in various capacities from 2003 to 2017.
On the eve of his retirement, Cascolan urged the men and women of the PNP to rally behind the leadership of Gen. Sinas.
“General Sinas needs all the support and strong commitment of the PNP Officer Corps and rank-and-file for him to effectively discharge his duties and functions as Chief PNP,” Cascolan said.
“In a dynamic organization like the PNP, only the players are changed, but the strategic vision remains constant and endures until the endgame in year 2030 when we shall have completed our journey to complete organizational development and service excellence,” the outgoing PNP chief said.
Cascolan said that Sinas brings with him a sterling track record in administrative management with vast experience in police operations, and a well-rounded career pattern in all his command, staff and training assignments in Luzon, Visayas, Mindanao and Metro Manila.
Cascolan expressed confidence on Sinas’ command management of the PNP to sustain the momentum of the 4-pronged national campaign against crime, illegal drugs, terrorism and corruption.