By: Jennifer P. Rendon
WILL it be another bloody anti-drug war with controversial Police Lieutenant Colonel Jovie Espenido now heading Bacolod City’s operations against illegal activities?
It doesn’t have to be, Espenido said on Wednesday right after a courtesy call to Police Brigadier General Rene Pamuspusan, Police Regional Office (PRO)-6 director.
“If it’s God’s will, hindi man tayo makasiguro nyan kasi ang sa atin trabaho lang. ‘Yung sa atin lang is the rule of law. ‘Yun man ang pinangarap ng Presidente natin na mandate ng batas sa PNP,” he vaguely said.
But Espenido qualified his answer saying that they are police officers and not criminals.
As such, he follows the PNP’s mantra which is “To serve and protect.”
Espenido’s career has been a bloody one as his stint in Leyte and Ozamiz City were highlighted by the deaths of suspected drug ring leaders in high-profile police operations.
Before a press conference with Pamuspusan, which Espenido also attended, the former administered the donning of rank to the latter, a ceremony signifying an officer’s promotion to the next higher rank.
Pamuspusan later confirmed he will issue an order designating Espenido as Bacolod City Police Office (BCPO)’s deputy city director for operations, the third highest post in the area.
“The rank calls for it and the rank for DCDO commensurate with his newly-given rank in the PNP,” he said.
As DCDO, Espenido is expected to handle the operational matters of BCPO.
“He will also act as the chairman of the oversight committee on anti-illegal drugs, he will oversee all activities in Bacolod City,” he said.
Pamuspusan said the activities of the quad-group and other staff, which have concerns on anti-illegal drugs operations.
Meanwhile, PRO-6 had to relieve Police Lieutenant Colonel Levy Pangue, outgoing BCPO-DCDO, from his post to give way to Espenido’s appointment.
Pangue is the incoming deputy chief of the Regional Headquarters Support Unit (RHSU).
Pamuspusan said that Bacolod City is the most problematic area in Western Visayas as far as illegal drugs is concerned.
As such, he admitted that Espenido’s new assignment is a critical position.
On the other hand, Espenido clarified that his appointment doesn’t mean he’s better than anyone else.
“Trabaho lang ang sa akin. Siguro, ‘yung strategy, iba naman siguro,” he said.
He then asked help from the people to pray for them as they perform their jobs.
The community, he said, will be their prayer warrior so they can deliver what is expected of them.