Espenido faces probe
(The Freeman) - February 20, 2020 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — The controversial police official, Lt. Col. Jovie Espenido, is facing another investigation after speaking out in public about his inclusion in President Rodrigo Duterte’s narco list.

A visibly irked Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Archie Francisco Gamboa yesterday ordered a probe on Espenido two days after he broke his silence about his inclusion in the drugs list.

“It’s purely an internal issue. I will deal with Espenido squarely as the chief PNP and he being a member of the PNP,” Gamboa said in a press briefing at Camp Crame.

Espenido yesterday held a nearly two-hour press conference in Bacolod City where he again went on the offensive against what he described as corrupt politicians and police officers who may be behind the inclusion of his name in the narco list.

In earlier interviews, Espenido said he is not discounting the possibility that there was a failure of intelligence on the part of the PNP for including him in the list.

Asked if what Espenido has been doing is a form of insubordination, Gamboa said: “Not yet.  That’s why he will be investigated.”

Gamboa said he instructed police officials in the narco list, including Espenido, not to speak on the issue while the adjudication and validation processes are ongoing.

Gamboa has repeatedly refused to confirm if Espenido is on the list as he has promised the police officers in the list he will not mention their names in public so as not to humiliate them.

It was Interior and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Ano who confirmed that Espenido is on the list. A total of 357 police officers are included in the drugs watchlist but one of them was killed during a shooting incident this month.

Gamboa hopes to submit his recommendations on the police officials to Duterte during a joint command conference with the Armed Forces of the Philippines on March 5. Philippine Star News Service, FPL (FREEMAN)

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