Anti-drug operations top PNP command guidelines heading into 4th week of Metro Manila GCQ

Franco Luna - Philstar.com
Anti-drug operations top PNP command guidelines heading into 4th week of Metro Manila GCQ
Police and local authorities man checkpoints around Kaingin Bukid in Barangay Apolonio Samson after it was placed under the special concern lockdown (SCL) after the surge of the novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases.
The STAR / Michael Varcas

MANILA, Philippines — Operations against illegal drugs headlined national police leadership's command guidelines for the agency moving forward, its chief said Monday. 

Speaking in a live-streamed press briefing, Police Gen. Archie Gamboa, PNP chief, said that ranking execs within the police convened at a command conference over the weekend which included members of the PNP Command Group, Directorial Staff, Directors of National Support Units and Regional Directors.

At the top of their list was to "Initiate operations against high-value targets belonging to the Top 10 Most Wanted drug personalities in every jurisdiction."

"I also echoed the guidance of President Rodrigo R. Duterte for PNP units to seize every opportunity to be on the offensive against illegal drugs," Gamboa said. 

RELATED: PNP: Anti-drug operations 'will be unrelenting as ever' amid COVID-19 crisis

Among the other priority guidelines outlined by the police chief were to:

  1. Maximize the use of information and communication technology by going digital. Digital law enforcement ensures faster exchange of information and tactical accuracy on the ground; 
  2. Sustain the annual recruitment cycles within the year to fill-up vacancies due to attrition and personnel requirements; 
  3. Fast track the  construction of another RT-PCR laboratory in Central Visayas
  4. Advance training on management of social media platforms of PNP units; and 
  5. New normal modes of holding traditional events and ceremonies.

Earlier in mid-March, Police Maj. Gen. Debold Sinas, Metro Manila police chief, said that Oplan Tokhang would be suspended amid the quarantine of Metro Manila. 

Revised manual 

At his press briefing, the police chief, a lawyer, also made sure to warn rogue cops that swift charges would follow any violations. 

"Just as the PNP is quick to recognize and reward our personnel for their outstanding performance, we are equally swift and decisive in going after erring cops. This should, therefore, serve as a warning to PNP personnel who refuse to toe the line," Gamboa said. 

READ: PNP unveils plan as Metro Manila shifts to GCQ | Gamboa tells Sinas: Get rid of rogue cops

"I am both an officer of the law and an officer of the courts. Rest assured that I will file cases against you and hold you accountable for your criminal acts," he added.

According to Gamboa, the national police was also in the process of publishing a Revised PNP First Responders’ Manual under the so-called new normal outlining minimum health standards in a crime scene, modified duty rotation of patrollers, safety health safety protocols, and use of protective equipment.

This was, he said, due to the "pressing concerns confronting the PNP in relation to the prevailing national health emergency, primarily on healthcare and force protection aspects as we adapt to the new operating environment."

"A similar Revised Manual for Police Investigators is also being finalized to better equip our crime investigators with investigative tools and technology that will not only minimize the risk of exposure to the COVID-19 virus but will also enhance capacity to solve and monitor cases, serve court processes and harmonize the functions of the criminal justice system," he said. 

The updated PNP Investigator’s Handbook in the New Normal is set to orient police officers on the general principles of investigation procedures to serve as a guide for investigators responding to crime incidents. 

PNP coronavirus tally 

The police chief also disclosed that there were 499 confirmed COVID-19 cases among the PNP's ranks.

"Law enforcement operations during the 75-day ECQ period and the continuing GCQ have exposed our police personnel to the risk of infection," he said.

"But with an almost 60% recovery rate posted by the PNP healthcare system, 155 fully-recovered personnel have been restored to full-duty fit-to-work status, out of the 288 PNP patients who have been declared cured of the infection. The rest of the recovered PNP patients are just awaiting completion of the required quarantine and monitoring period," he added. 

RELATED: PNP credits 'intensified mass testing' for recovery of cops with COVID-19

The PNP currently operates a coronavirus testing laboratory out of its headquarters in Camp Crame. A second laboratory is also being pursued and fast-tracked. 

Gamboa earlier attributed the relatively high recovery rate to what he said was the intensified mass testing within the organization. 

As of Sunday evening's update, the PNP also listed 661 probable cases to go with 875 suspect cases. 



  • Latest
  • Trending
Are you sure you want to log out?

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

or sign in with