By Leonel Abasola

File photo

MANILA – An internal review being conducted in the Philippine National Police (PNP) aimed at determining cops with drug links will conclude in two weeks or so, President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. said on Tuesday, as he vowed to relentlessly fight the proliferation of illicit narcotics in the country.

“Kaya naman ating ginawa ‘yung review, mga official sa police at dahan-dahan… malapit nang matapos. (That’s why we are reviewing the police officials and slowly, we will finish). I think in another two weeks or so, we’ll be able to finish that. We’ll be able to review all of that,” Marcos said during the 1st Joint National Peace and Order Council (NPOC) and Regional Peace and Order Council (RPOC) meeting in Malacañang.

“It’s a very complicated system, and it’s a very complicated situation. Hindi naman tayo puwedeng umaksyon on the basis ng tsismis (We cannot act on the basis of hearsays). We cannot move on that basis. We have to be very careful because we have to [be] fair. It has to be just,” the chief executive pointed out.

The President said the government has nothing against the police force because it is the administration’s partner in peace and order.

He appealed to the members of the PNP to work with his administration, stressing he has an obligation to address the drug trade problem and ensure a credible and well-functioning police force in the country.

“The police have to be with us. They have to be on our side. We cannot do it without them. Ganun lang kasimple ‘yun (That how simple it is). We have to have a good functioning police force,” he said.

“Now, but there should be also a mechanism where those who have succumbed to temptation must be brought to account para naman mabuwag natin ang mga ganyang klaseng Sistema (to eliminate that kind of system),” he added.

During the meeting with peace and order councils, Marcos urged council members to address the country’s two main peace and order problems: the rise in political violence and violence stemming from competition among drug syndicates.

The country should tackle the peace and order problem now to avoid being mired in violence and disarray like what happened in other countries.

“We have seen it happening in other countries around the world. Huwag tayong… huwag nating pabayaang mapunta ang Pilipinas doon sa ganung klaseng sitwasyon. Bakit? (Let’s not allow the Philippines go that situation. Why?) That’s when governments fail, that when nations fail, and wala na tayong maaasahan (We will have no hope),” he said.

Last January, Interior Secretary Benjamin Abalos Jr. asked high-ranking police officers to file their courtesy resignation as part of the efforts to cleanse the police force of officers with drug links.

Abalos said a committee would review the records of all the police officers and retain those who are not involved in the illegal narcotics trade. (PNA)