Why PNP has yet to relieve 'LP generals'

ABS-CBN News

MANILA - The Philippine National Police (PNP) explained Friday why they have yet to relieve four police generals who allegedly had a meeting with the staff of Liberal Party (LP) standard-bearer Mar Roxas.

PNP spokesperson Chief Supt. Wilben Mayor said they still need to verify if the letter of vice-presidential aspirant and Senator Francis ''Chiz'' Escudero calling for the relief of the four generals is an official complaint.

PNP Director General Ricardo Marquez has also yet to read Escudero's letter, according to Mayor.

It was earlier reported that Director Generoso Cerbo Jr., chief of the PNP directorate for intelligence, and C/Supts. Renier Idio, Bernardo Diaz and Ronald Santos were spotted in Novotel in Araneta Center, Quezon City with retired PNP deputy director general Marcelo Garbo Jr.

Incidentally, a group of journalists was at the same hotel. A report by the Philippine Star quoted an anonymous male television reporter saying that he saw Thea Reyes, a staff of Roxas, in a room with the police officials.

The four generals still hold their posts so far despite the perceived political partisanship -- an act prohibited among government officials, including the police.

This is contrary to the PNP chief's earlier guarantee that relief orders will be issued immediately against policemen linked with any political activity, regardless of the complaint's veracity.

In the case of the four officials, Marquez only said that the Internal Affairs Service has launched a probe on the alleged meeting.

The generals, meanwhile, have denied attending a political gathering, insisting that it was a mere personal get-together with a retired officer who happens to be in the Roxas camp.

Roxas has also downplayed the meeting, saying his staff met the generals by chance.

The presidential candidate said his staff and the police officials previously worked together at the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG).

"Natanong ko 'yung isang staff ko, sabi nila, nagkita sila sa lobby. Nagchikahan sila at 'yun lang din 'yun," said Roxas, a former interior secretary.

Escudero is set to file charges of violation of elections laws against Cerbo, Diaz, Idio and Santos. -- Report from Jon IbaƱez, dzMM

[SET TO FILE CHARGES -- http://news.abs-cbn.com/halalan2016/nation/04/11/16/chiz-to-file-raps-vs-cops-who-allegedly-met-with-roxas-staff]

KNOW THE WHOLE STORY