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Cops to have rights booklet on cell phones

Emmanuel Tupas - The Philippine Star
Cops to have rights booklet on cell phones

HRAO director Chief Supt. Dennis Siervo yesterday said they would craft a memorandum for PNP chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa’s approval, mandating all police personnel to have the app downloaded on their smartphones. File

MANILA, Philippines — The Human Rights Affairs Office (HRAO) of the Philippine National Police (PNP) wants the mobile application “Know Your Rights” to be mandatory for every police officer.

HRAO director Chief Supt. Dennis Siervo yesterday said they would craft a memorandum for PNP chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa’s approval, mandating all police personnel to have the app downloaded on their smartphones.

“We will seek the approval of the PNP chief for the app to be mandatorily downloaded,” Siervo told a press conference at Camp Crame.

The HRAO yesterday launched the app, which can be downloaded for free by android device users from Google Play Store.

The launch coincided with this year’s celebration of the National Human Rights Consciousness Week with the theme “Stand Up for Someone’s Right Today.”

For policemen with old phones, Siervo said they should buy smartphones so that they can download the app as the PNP is doing away with handbooks which are more expensive.

He said a smartphone can now be brought for P3,000 to P4,000.

“It’s already the individual responsibility of a law enforcer to secure the tools so that they can download this app,” Siervo said.

“We cannot provide everything for them.”

Smartphone users can obtain human rights advisories and policies which the PNP crafted, including the contents of the “Miranda Rights” which Siervo said is important when law enforcers arrest suspected criminals.

The Miranda warning is available in other languages of countries who have citizens in the Philippines like Japan and China.

This is to avoid the dismissal of cases by “technicality” when a suspect claims he was not informed about his rights under the law.

“In order to do away with the cases dismissed because of technicalities, we are providing them with this tool,” Siervo said.

The app also has sections for rights of persons arrested, detained or under custodial investigation as well as a feedback mechanism where the public can complain about abuses by policemen.

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