THE Philippine National Police (PNP) called on the leadership of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) to show their “sincerity” to the peace process by turning over criminal suspects within their areas of jurisdiction.
PNP Chief Rodolfo S. Azurin Jr. made the appeal after two policemen died in an ambush on Tuesday while serving a warrant in an alleged Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) territory in Ampatuan, Maguindanao.
Azurin decried the incident, which local government officials (LGU) in BARMM partly attributed to the failure of the police to “coordinate” with them.
He questioned the need for the said coordination, stressing that the members of the PNP were merely doing their job.
“We are here to serve our countrymen, so why will the [movement] of our police in the area there be limited?” Azurin said in a news conference on Wednesday.
He further noted that the policy could also hamper or delay their operation in apprehending suspects involved in criminal activities.
“If for every police operation, our law enforcers must get the permission [of LGUs], what will be the probability we will be able to apprehend [the suspects]?” Azurin asked.
PNP said it is now hoping BARMM officials, particularly members of the Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA), will cooperate in its anti-criminal operations.
“They should be helping the government… in going after criminals since they are already part of the government. So that is what we are asking our companions in the peace process,” Azurin said.
Image credits: PNP/Facebook