DILG assures fair, thorough trial for beleaguered PNP Chief

By Chito Chavez

The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) on Thursday assured that a "thorough and fair" probe on the charges leveled against Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Police General Oscar Albayalde will be conducted.

DILG undersecretary and spokesman Jonathan Malaya (DILG 10 via PIA /  MANILA BULLETIN) DILG Undersecretary and Spokesman Jonathan Malaya

At the sidelines of a forum in Quezon City, DILG Undersecretary and spokesman Jonathan Malaya noted the department still supports Albayalde in the midst of the controversies surrounding him and the PNP on their supposed involvement in the illegal drug trade.

Although the DILG supports Albayalde, Malaya said the pendulum of justice must be adhered to saying an unbiased, fair, and justifiable investigation is still on.

"I can assure the public that is exactly what we will do. It is important that the credibility of the Philippine National Police and the entire department is protected and preserved," he added.

Due to the controversy, the public’s trust on the police force has diminished.

Malaya noted the DILG's probe is independent from the Senate's inquiry on the issue involving Albayalde.

Malaya explained the results of the investigation of the Senate Blue Ribbon and Justice Committees will be taken into account by the DILG.

"We are also awaiting the results of the committee report that will come out from the Senate investigation because these statements are made under oath before a government body," Malaya said.

Albayalde, who is set to retire on November 8, is accused of interceding in behalf of 13 of his former men at the Pampanga Police Regional Office who were facing dismissal charges for their alleged involvement in the recycling of their seized drugs in 2013.

Albayalde was then the Pampanga provincial director.

In the Senate hearing, Albayalde admitted asking the PNP Region 3 Regional Director Aaron Aquino about the status of the case of the 13 cops.

However, Albayalde insisted that he never interceded explaining that he had no intention to influence Aquino in exonerating his men.

Aquino is the current head of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA).

Malaya said Interior Secretary Eduardo Año will make the announcements when he comes back from Russia where he is a part of the President’s delegation.