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Pulis, eh


MOVE ON, pleaded embattled PNP chief Gen. Oscar Albayalde, citing as his clean bill of uprightness President Duterte’s give-me-clear-proof fiat on his “alleged” involvement with the ninja cops at the time he was Pampanga police director.

Move back, I did as I am wont to, through my files searching for any piece I could have written on that then-as-now infamous police anti-drug ops at Lakeshore in Nov. 2013.

Unfortunately, there was nothing on that raid in my blog; Albayalde absolutely absent too in the hundreds of columns stored there.

What I hit on was something of a precursor to the Lakeshore raid, happening in July 2013, a mere four months before it. Same modus of: 1) cops extracting cash from the suspect for his escape; 2) cops helping themselves with the cash and drugs confiscated in the raid.

Déjà vu. Down to the (ir)rationalizations and lamentations. Dated July 29, 2013, here is Pulis…Purisima! for its revived relevance:

IT IS criminals that now appear to be heroes. So lamented Director General Alan Purisima, the nation’s top cop, in the wake of police meltdown over: 1) the killing – while in police custody – of recaptured Ozamiz gang leader Ricky Cadavero and his right-hand man, from whom police allegedly accepted pay-off s for their earlier escape; 2) another alleged pay-off from the same Ozamiz gang for the escape of drug lord Li Lan Yan, aka Jackson Dy and his wife; 3) the police allegedly helping themselves to the cash and illegal drugs allegedly found in the Dys’ safe house when they were recaptured.

Escape and recapture galore there.

Purisima rues: “We have to verify these reports. With so many stories coming out, even members of the media are unwittingly being used because they are fed false information. A criminal is becoming the hero. It’s now the reverse.”

Still smarting in shame is Purisima’s PNP over the Atimonan massacre last January were an illegal gambling lord and 12 others were killed in what the police said was a shootout but the NBI ruled as a rubout.

Claiming strict adherence to the daang matuwid of President BS Aquino, especially so being close to his SONA, Purisima said the PNP does not let erring cops “get away with it even if they are ranking officials.”

“What is important is if there are incidents like this, we seriously investigate it. We try to find out the truth. If they are found to be liable, they are given the corresponding punishment. Cases will be filed against them.” So declared Purisima.

This, even as he pointed the finger at drug lords for “discrediting policemen who have been performing well, especially in the fight against illegal drugs.”

“They have all the money and power to do that. They have a lot of influence,” Purisima said.

Still, Purisima reassured the public that allegations against policemen in these recent epic fails will be thoroughly investigated: “We have deployed other operatives to look into this. I have contacted different agencies to look into this incident. We will have a report in due time. If there is an incident like this, it is impossible that other operatives do not know about it. As they say, if the fart stinks, everyone can smell it.”

Yeah, and farting is such stinking sorrow at the PNP, to bastardize the bard. The stench of corruption and inefficiency seemingly part and parcel of the police badge.

So many years back, we wrote here:

MAY pulis, may pulis sa ilalim ng tulay…

The ditty is a satirical flick of the finger at the uniformed sneak preying on unwary motorists for two Osmeñas or a Roxas in exchange of their being let go off some trumped-up traffic infraction.

Pulis, pulis, pulis matulis.

Ah, double entendre here: the sharpness of the cop at filching the last Quezon off a hapless victim, and the put-on machismo obtaining in a force whose members purportedly have not just one, but two or more paramours.

Flash Report: The Philippine National Police holds the record for the quickest response in crime situations, beating such elite police forces as the New York Police Department which registered eight minutes, and Great Britain’s Scotland Yard at five minutes. The PNP registered zero minutes. Impossible? No, they are in the scene, themselves committing the crime.

Truly, that is a most painful joke – to the national police – that has circled the globe via internet. And just how are the police caricatured? Uniformly: pot-bellied, palm outstretched.

Tawagin mo na akong demonyo, huwag lang pulis.

Ah, the unkindest cut of all inflicted on the PNP in the Inquirer comic strip Pugad Baboy where the comparison to the police provided the final straw that broke the patience of the henpecked Air Force Sgt. Sabaybunot giving him the rage to snarl at his domineering wife. Better be called a devil than a policeman, can anything get lower than this?

Object of ridicule and derision, the police may be the rich lode of all that humor, but the joke is on all of us: victims of the very things we draw laughter from. Doesn’t it hurt to laugh?

As Purisima will most surely now, so all the others before him have tried to redeem the image of the policeman.

At the time of DG Avelino “Sonny” Razon, it was Mamang Pulis. Alas, Razon is currently facing some corruption charges himself arising from some alleged misdeals while he was PNP chief.

We wrote too that at the time of Ping Lacson, there was this imperial command for a standard 34-inch waistline for all policemen. We saw how overweight cops huff ed and puffed before the national media to show one and all the seriousness of Ping’s campaign for svelteness.

The defining moment of the Egay Aglipay reign at the PNP was the Subic “rehab” program for “erring and recidivist police personnel.”

So what happened to all these?

BSDU rules in the end. That’s not for the police-created paramilitary Barrio Self Defense Units of the ‘60s. That’s for Balik Sa Dating Ugali.

Aye, not even an extreme make-over will do the police body good. A quintuple by-pass, maybe?

PNP – Pasaway Na Pulis. Oh, yeah.


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