Interior and Local Government Secretary Ismael Sueno on Monday ordered National Police Commission (NAPOLCOM) to conduct a parallel investigation on possible culpability of police into deaths of Albuera Mayor Rolando Espinosa and Raul Yap inside cell in Leyte last Saturday morning.
Sueno said that NAPOLCOM had the top priority to initiate its own probe in the incident considering that it was the agency mandated under the law to exercise administrative and operational supervision over the Philippine National Police (PNP).
“NAPOLCOM should make this (probe) as their top priority. We have to know what really transpired on that day. We owe the family of the slain inmates and the public a factual and detailed account of the incident,” said Sueno.
He also said that while he had no doubts with the Philippine National Police-Internal Affairs Service (PNP-IAS) to led probe, he wanted to assure the public on the reliability of results through the authority of NAPOLCOM to conduct pre-charge investigation of police anomalies and irregularities and summary dismissal of erring police officers.
“While the PNP’s Internal Affairs Service (PNP-IAS) has automatically started its own investigation, it is still necessary for NAPOLCOM to get into the picture to lend integrity and credibility to the probe and to answer involved questions behind,” he said.
Aside from NAPOLCOM, Sueno said that the PNP-IAS Headquarters (IAS HQ) and Regional IAS 8 (RIAS 8) had been working for the initial motu-propio investigation of the incident in Baybay City Sub-Provincial Jail.
IAS HQ has requested both the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) Headquarters and CIDG Region 8 office for the names of at least 15 operatives who were involved in the operation.
RIAS 8 has also conducted an ocular investigation in said jail. The process of obtaining affidavits and the review of relevant documents to determine possible violations of Police Operational Procedures (POP) is still under process. (Aira May Dizon/PNA)