MANILA (UPDATED) - Is Vice President Jejomar Binay making amends with the police officer he allegedly demeaned and assaulted last Monday?
Sr. Supt. Elmer Jamias, deputy director for administration of the Southern Police District (SPD) and the ground commander in Makati, said emissaries of Binay have reached out to him to convey the apology of the Vice President.
"Maraming nakakarating sa akin na tumatawag na gusto nila akong kausapin nang personal para iparating ang gustong paghingi ng paumanhin ng ating Vice President," Jamias said in an interview on radio dzMM Thursday.
He, however, refused to name the supposed emissaries sent by Binay. He only said that one of them is a known ally of the Vice President.
Responding to the police officer's statement, the camp of Binay challenged Jamias to identify the supposed emissaries sent by the Vice President.
"We dare Jamias: name names," said vice presidential spokesperson for political affairs Atty. Rico Quicho in a statement.
"His predilection for lying and his abusive actions disgrace the professional men and women of the PNP. Jamias exemplifies the abusive police officer who should be weeded out but instead pampered by the DILG secretary," Quicho added.
JAMIAS TO FILE CHARGES
According to Jamias, he does not hold a personal grudge against Binay, stressing that he still respects the latter as the country's second highest official.
However, he said he will still file a complaint against Binay and his security personnel over what they allegedly did to him and his men.
"Sinabi ko sa kanila wala akong personal kay Vice President Binay. Bagkus, ako'y nirerespeto ko siya bilang Pangalawang Pangulo," he said. "Ngunit hindi ko pwedeng pabayaan na ang Philippine National Police (PNP) ay pipigilan sa kanyang tungkulin sa pagpapatupad sa batas."
"Tumutupad lamang ako sa aking sinumpaang tungkulin bilang alagad ng batas," he added.
The police officer said the special investigating task force formed by the PNP will determine the appropriate charges to be filed against Binay and his aides.
In a press conference on Wednesday, Jamias maintained that Binay mocked and berated him outside the Makati City Hall last Monday evening.
Police personnel were deployed to the area to prevent the supporters of the Binay family from blocking officers who would serve the suspension order against Makati Mayor Junjun Binay.
The younger Binay was ordered suspended by the Office of the Ombudsman in connection with the alleged rigging of the bidding for the Makati City Science High School building construction.
"Nakaharap ko ang inaakala kong Vice President na sumusuporta sa kapulisan niya. Ngunit kabaliktaran ang nangyari. Siya'y naglait sa aking pangalan ng personal... Sinasabi niya sa akin na, 'Kakalabanin kita ngayon, maglalaban tayo, at pagalis ko dito, tatanggalin ko mga tao mo,'" Jamias had said in the PNP press briefing.
"Ako po'y magsasampa ng reklamo laban sa Vice President dahil sa kanyang panlalait sa aking pangalan at sa kanyang direct assault na ginawa sa akin at ang threat na sinasabi niya sakin bago siya umalis," he added.
Like Jamias, Chief Insp. Gideon Ines, team leader of the Regional Public Safety Battalion (RPSB), also claimed that he was confronted by the Vice President, threatened to be removed from service, and punched by Binay's security personnel.
"He confronted me. While I was talking with him, I was collared and he pushed me more or less 20 meters away from our frontline. Then after that nagkaroon ng eruption ng commotion and yung mga security personnel niya dinibdiban ako. And then na-experience ko rin yung konting threat, yung ipapatanggal daw kami sa service. Pati yung babae sa frontline ay naitulak din ng kanyang mga security personnel," Ines said.
Quicho, however, maintained that it was Jamias and his men who "gave the Vice President the run around."
"It is unfortunate that Sr. Supt. Jamias and his officers would resort to cheap gimmickry like their DILG boss just to get media attention. What he said in the press conference was far from what transpired. What can be seen in the videos he presented is far from the truth," he said.
He also said that they received complaints from two elderly women who allegedly suffered harsh treatment from Ines and his men.
"The Vice President proceeded to the command outpost but Jamias and his men gave the Vice President the run around. Finally Jamias was found hiding in his car. He was reminded by the Vice President about Constitutional rights and that by setting up barricades, the police are curtailing the right to assemble," he said.
The Vice President's camp admitted that Binay, back in 1999, commended Jamias when the police officer was awarded the 1999 Outstanding Manilan Award for the criminal justice system category.
But the name of Jamias allegedly got dragged in illegal activities afterwards.
"This is the same police officer who commanded the excessive and exaggerated presence of the police at City Hall. Jamias' leadership by remote control greatly contributed to the incidents in the City Hall, which the PNP leadership chose to ignore and thereafter hastily concluded to file charges," Quicho said.
"Perhaps Jamias together with his other officers should undergo a refresher course on the meaning of 'order and advice' to avoid confusion. We will meet them in the appropriate and impartial forum. The Vice President understands the police officers' predicament of following an order or advice but reserves his right to protect the people and vindicate the wrong done to them," he added.
"Perhaps it is time to ask what actions have been taken on the case against Jamias still pending before Napolcom for his alleged involvement in extortion. Kaya ba mayabang at malakas ang loob ni Jamias na magsinungaling dahil may pangako na mawawala ang kaso?"