MANILA—The return of police officer Chief Insp. Jovie Espenido as chief of police of Ozamiz city will push through, Malacañang said Saturday.
In a statement, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the Palace "finds no compelling reason" to revoke Espenido's reassignment on account of the "opposing call by a certain group called Concerned Ozamiz Professionals (COP)."
Panelo said the group's existence was "questionable."
"And if it does exist is obviously supporters of the drug syndicate," he said.
"Moreover, Chief Inspector Espenido's recall is necessitated by the successful prosecution of the drug cases filed in court against the Parojinogs, as he led the police operations against the illegal drugs in Ozamiz."
In an order dated November 29, Thursday, Espenido was instructed to return as soon as possible to Ozamiz.
He was chief of the Ozamiz City police when then-mayor Reynaldo "Aldong" Parojinog and 15 others linked to illegal drugs were killed in a series of pre-dawn raids in 2017.