Chief Supt. Ronald Dela Rosa, the man nicknamed “Bato” (The Rock) for his muscular physique, formally assumed Friday his new post as the 21st chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP).
Dela Rosa assumed command of the 160,000-strong PNP, replacing Police Director General Ricardo Marquez.
Upon his assumption to the post as the highest police official of the land, Pres. Rodrigo Duterte approved Dela Rosa’s promotion to Police Director General (4-Star General), the highest rank in the PNP Officer Corps.
Dela Rosa said he will be Pres. Duterte’s right hand man in the fight against illegal drugs, criminality and corruption in order to provide each of every Filipino a safe, secured and comfortable life.
In his speech, Dela Rosa pledged his inquestionable loyalty to the President, who has been his partner in combatting drugs and criminality in the southern city of Davao.
“Pres. Duterte’s presidency is destiny and becoming PNP Chief is also a destiny… I take this as a God-given mission. I become a PNP Chief only once so I better give it all and give the best shot. Itotodo ko na ‘to and I swear I will not fail you, Mr. President,” Dela Rosa said in his inaugural speech following the turnover of command held at PNP Headquarters in Camp Crame, Quezon City.
Being at the helm of PNP, Dela Rosa likened his leadership to a father, who rewards his children for good performance and punishes them when erred.
”In fight against drugs, criminality and corruptions if you are with me then let’s do it but if you are not with me then your are finish,” he noted.
He vowed to relentlessly cleanse the PNP ranks of “scalawags” (corrupt officials) as he warned them to quit or face the brunt of the law.
”I’m giving you 48 hours to surrender to me, ilahad ninyo sa akin ang lahat. Otherwise mag-AWOL na lang kayo, mag-full time drug lord na lang at makipag-giyera na lang kayo sa amin [I’m giving you 48 hours to surrender to me, tell me all. Otherwise, go on absence without leave, become full time drug lords and declare war against us],” said Dela Rosa.
“I am telling you this… this has to stop right now or I will stop you from enjoying your evil life. I promise you, change is coming including your birthday which will be changed to November 2,” he added.
In the fight against criminality, Dela Rosa urged the public to cooperate with the police and put to end the ills that have marred the society for a long time.
”I am very optimistic together we can win this fight… We need your help very badly. I am urging you join the fight… ipagdasal niyo po kami na kami magtatagumpay sa aming misyon na sana hindi kami magkakamali at higit sa lahat hindi namin maaabuso ang karapatang pantao [Pray for us that we become successful in our missions, that we do not err in our job and most of all, that we do not abuse human rights],” he said.
Before assuming the top PNP post, Dela Rosa served as executive officer of the Directorate for Human Resource and Doctrine Development.
The Philippine Military Academy Alumni Association awarded him the prestigious PMAAAI 2015 Cavalier Award in recognition of his notable achievements in the field of Police Operations.
He is a member of the illustrious PMA “Sinagtala” Class of 1986.
He served various leadership positions in the command group of the PNP Intelligence Group from October 2013 to December 2014.
He rose from junior officer to field grade officer while serving various assignments in Mindanao as Battalion Commander of the 11th Regional Mobile Group, Regional Intelligence Officer, Compostela Valley Provincial Director, Davao Del Sur Provincial Director and head of the Mindanao Satellite Office of the Presidential Anti-Organized Crime Task Force (PAOCTF).
He served with distinction as Regional Logistics Officer for Southern Mindanao in 2011-2012 and as City Director of the Davao City Police Office (DCPO) in 2013 for which he received back-to-back citations as 2012 PNP Senior Officer of the Year for Operations and 2013 PNP Achievement Award in the Field of Operations.
Dela Rosa rose from humble beginnings in his hometown of Bato, Sta. Cruz, Davao del Sur and is a product of the public school system being a graduate of Bato Elementary School, Sta. Cruz National High School and Mindanao State University.
For his part, Duterte said that he will provide funds to PNP to fight illegal drugs and reiterated his campaign promise to double the salaries of the police and military and provide them the equipment necessary to fulfill their missions. (PNA)