ILOILO City – Mayor Oscar “Oca” Garin Sr. could no longer give orders to policemen in Guimbal, Iloilo. According to National Police Commission (Napolcom) vice chairman Rogelio Casurao yesterday, the Commission revoked the mayor’s deputation authority over his municipal police force.
Napolcom decided on the revocation after Garin and son Cong. Oscar “Richard” Garin Jr. (1st District, Iloilo) were charged criminally and administratively by a Guimbal policeman who complained of having been mauled.
Garin, however, could appeal the revocation, said Casurao.
The mayor may also recover his deputation authority if he gets reelected, according to the Napolcom official.
Garin is seeking reelection in the May 13, 2019 midterm elections.
“We are doing our best to improve how we run the affairs of government through instilling discipline among our officials,” said Casurao.
Napolcom’s revocation order imposed on Garin was “immediately executory” and “indefinite for the meantime,” he clarified.
Local government officials, according to Casurao, must act with circumspect.
“They should not be arrogant and violent because people will lose respect in elected officials, he added.
Napolcom may soon take “more drastic actions” in the Guimbal case, said Casurao, “so that it will serve as a deterrent for similar incidents not to happen again in the future.”
‘NO POLITICS IN RAPS’
Meanwhile, Secretary Eduardo Año of the Department of Interior and Local Government said there should be no talk of partisanship or politicking in the cases filed against the Garins.
“What we want to show here is that no one is above the law. Whatever your position is in government, whether you are a small ordinary citizen or a high-level government official, we are all the same in the eyes of the law,” said Año in a press conference yesterday on the sidelines of the 2018 National Anti-Drug Abuse Council Performance Award held at the Manila Hotel.
Police Officer 3 Federico Macaya Jr. charged the Garins before the Office of the Ombudsman with assault upon a person in authority, grave coercion, grave threats, physical injuries, slander by deeds, serious illegal detention, alarm and scandal, grave misconduct, conduct unbecoming of public officials, oppression, abuse of authority, and conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the public.
“If a policeman committed a wrongdoing, there are so many bodies that can investigate. You do not beat up and humiliate a police officer in front of the public,” said Año.
Macaya complained that Congressman Garin mauled him, slapped and spit on his face before dawn on Dec. 26 near the Guimbal town hall while the mayor was training a .45 pistol at him.
In a statement, Congressman Garin said he got irked with Macaya after a victim in a Dec. 22 commotion at the Guimbal public plaza told them the policeman persuaded him not to file the case against an attacker and that the cop forced him to sign an affidavit expressing disinterest in filing charges.
“For me, what the policeman did was a betrayal of public thrust kag klaro nga pag abusar sang iya posisyon,” according to Garin.
What Macaya did, according to the congressman, was contrary to the Philippine National Police (PNP) policy of not settling the parties in a criminal case.
He apologized to the Philippine National Police (PNP). According to him, he was taking “full responsibility” for his actions but stressed these “were a mere display of extreme frustration towards one, single PNP personnel nga sa akon panglantaw committed a great disservice to the people of Guimbal.”/PN