Amid controversies involving police, Diokno asks: Sino ang 'pasaway'?
In this July 4, 2019 photo, human rights lawyer Chel Diokno speaks regarding protecting the Filipino fishermen as well as the exclusive Economic Zone in the West Philippines Sea during a press conference in Quezon City.
The STAR/Michael Varcas
Amid controversies involving police, Diokno asks: Sino ang 'pasaway'?
( - July 2, 2020 - 4:46pm

MANILA, Philippines — As the government continues to attribute rising COVID-19 cases to people allegedly not following rules, human rights lawyer Chel Diokno quipped that the “pasaway” narrative may be more fitting for the police.

In a tweet that has since gone viral, Diokno pointed out that it is the Philippine National Police has been embroiled in several controversies in the past months, the latest of which involved the fatal shooting of four soldiers.

The PNP is the lead agency in enforcing quarantine protocols.

“PNP ang pumaslang sa apat na sundalo sa Jolo, PNP ang nang-maltrato sa tauhan ng [Department of Environment and Natural Resources] sa Palawan, PNP ang pumatay kay Corporal [Winston] Ragos. PNP ang lumabag sa quarantine para mag-mañanita,” he wrote.

(PNP killed four soldiers in Jolo. PNP maltreated DENR personnel in Palawan. PNP killed Ragos. PNP violated quarantine for a mañanita.)

“Sino ang totoong pasaway?” Diokno asked. He added the hashtag #IdisiplinaAngPulisya or "discipline the police".

The Department of the Interior and Local Government insisted that while Filipinos “generally” followed quarantine protocols, many were still stubborn.

READ: Quarantine 'generally' followed but 'many' still 'pasaway' — DILG

This is despite findings by tech giants Google LLC and Apple Inc. that showed that not only did Filipinos stay at home during the quarantine most were still keeping indoors even as lockdowns against COVID-19 were eased starting June 1.

Police cases

Members of the police force are facing complaints over the incidents Diokno cited.

Police Maj. Gen. Debold Sinas, Metro Manila police chief, and 18 others are also facing criminal and administrative complaints over his mañanita or birthday celebration despite a ban on mass gatherings, a prohibition that police continue to enforce.

President Rodrigo Duterte however did not relieve Sinas of his post saying that he is an honest and competent officer.

RELATED: NBI files murder, planting of evidence raps vs cops in Ragos killing

Sen. Risa Hontiveros also on Thursday filed a resolution calling on her colleagues to launch a legislative probe into the killing of four soldiers by police in Jolo, Sulu.

Hontiveros said her resolution "aims to institutionalize measures against the excessive use of force and violence within the police force."

"The incident in Jolo further feeds the public's distrust toward the [national police]. Especially since this is not the first time this has happened...our police cannot be trigger-happy," the senator said in a mix of English and Filipino. — Kristine Joy Patag with reports from Bella Perez-Rubio

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