By Jennifer P. Rendon
Speaking of cleaning your own backyard.
The Iloilo Police Provincial Office (IPPO) announced that it will intensify its internal crackdown on police officers engaged in all forms of online gambling, including e-sabong or “talpak.”
Colonel Noel Aliño, Iloilo City, said Monday that they would conduct regular inspections of mobile phones and gadgets of IPPO personnel so that “they are not hooked on in any form of online gambling or betting especially while on duty.”
Aliño made the pronouncement in consonance with the command directive of Brigadier General Leo Francisco, Western Visayas police chief, about “Police Regional Office (PRO) 6 personnel having a high degree of professionalism by prohibiting them from engaging in any form of online gambling.”
“IPPO personnel who fail to observe the foregoing directive will be subjected to pre-charge investigation,” Aliño said.
Further, “chiefs of police who fail to supervise their personnel/subordinates in complying with the foregoing directive will also be subjected to the same probe pursuant to the principle of command responsibility,” he said.
Major Nestor Bacuyag, IPPO spokesperson, said that a team from IPPO will conduct random and surprise inspections in the coming days.
“We will check on their gadgets if they have installed gambling apps,” he said.
The inspection of gadgets, especially mobile phones, is nothing new in the PNP ranks.
Even when e-sabong was still allowed, the PNP issued a memorandum prohibiting policemen from engaging in all forms of online gambling, to include e-sabong.
But so far, no police officer was caught engaging in online gambling in Western Visayas.
Meanwhile, Bacuyag has denied reports of the existence of guerilla e-sabong operations in the province.
He said they received reports of these operations in the towns of Janiuay, Calinog, and Balasan.
“We have checked these areas pero wala naman,” he said.
Last week, President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. has issued an executive order directing the continued suspension of e-sabong operations in the country.