By Jhon Aldrin Casinas
The newly-installed Eastern Police District (EPD) director has given a stern warning to police officers who would dare dip their hands into any form of illegal activity.
This, as Police Brig. Gen. Johnson Almazan officially took over the helm at the EPD in a change of command ceremony on Friday. It was presided over by National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) chief Major General Guillermo Eleazar.
Almazan replaced Police Brig. Gen Nolasco Bathan, who is now the Southern Police District (SPD) director.
In an interview with reporters after the ceremony, Almazan said he will continue with the internal cleansing program of the Philippine National Police (PNP).
“No police officer should be involved in any illegal activity. Talagang mastrikto ako diyan (I am really strict on that),” Almazan said.
The new district director also vowed to check on the character and attitude of police officers under his command.
Almazan said this was the order given to him by the NCRPO chief before he officially assumed the position.
“Ang bilin sa akin ng ating Regional Director (The order that was given to me by our Regional Director) … is to really check on the character and attitude of our police officers,” Almazan said.
Numerous controversies have hounded the EPD this year, causing PNP top brass to replace its district director multiple times.
In March, former EPD director Brig. Gen. Bernabe Balba was sacked for command responsibility when members of the District Drug Enforcement Unit allegedly extorted money from an arrested drug suspect.
His replacement, Police Brig. Gen. Christopher Tambungan, was also relieved in June following a controversy where he was accused of physically and verbally abusing a San Juan City policewoman in May.
Almazan’s previous assignment was acting executive officer of the Directorate for Integrated Police Operations (DIPO) – Visayas. He also previously served as Caloocan City Police chief in 2016. #
The EPD covers the cities of Pasig, San Juan, Mandaluyong and Marikina.