By Alexis Romero, October 2 2019; Philippine Star

Image Credit to Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — Under fire for alleged links to rogue police officers, beleaguered Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Gen. Oscar Albayalde said yesterday he was ready to be relieved of his post ahead of his retirement in November.

“Remember I consider myself as expendable. I am a government employee, a public servant. I think all of us are expendable,” he said.

Albayalde made the remark as he questioned the motive of his accuser, Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong, in reviving the issue.

He said Magalong had the chance to act on rogue policemen when he was still chief of the PNP-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG).

Albayalde, who reaches the mandatory PNP retirement age of 56 on Nov. 8, said it would be up to President Duterte to take Magalong’s allegations into consideration and retire him earlier.

“It depends on what the President will say. If the President says I will retire, there’s no problem with that,” Albayalde said.?

He lamented that Magalong had his chance to clear the drug issues but apparently failed.

“He had all the chance and time and the power and authority to monitor, supervise. I wonder why after six years he is now accusing us, as if we are not doing anything to address the scalawags in uniform. And also I would like to ask yung during the time when they were still in the service, when did the ‘ninja cops’ thrive? When did the illegal drugs problem in country worsen? Definitely not during the time of President Duterte,” Albayalde said.

Albayalde said he does not know what motivated Magalong to link him to the illegal drug trade.

He also accused Magalong of putting words into the mouth of Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency chief Aaron Aquino, whom the former CIDG chief quoted as saying that Albayalde had asked him not to enforce a 2014 dismissal order against some policemen in Pampanga. Magalong said Aquino was police chief of Central Luzon when the incident took place.?

“He (Magalong) is putting words into the mouth of somebody else. I think this is very ungentlemanly of him and very unstatemanship of somebody who is occupying a position in government,” Albayalde said. ?

Asked about his previous encounters with Magalong, Albayalde replied: “I don’t know with him. Perhaps, you know, there are people who are frustrated in a position probably and he knows that he is the most deserving person. I really don’t know.”?

Albayalde claimed Magalong even asked him for help when the former CIDG chief was on floating status from 2006 to 2010. He did not elaborate, saying Magalong should be the one to provide the details.  ?

Pressed if he thought the allegations would affect Duterte’s confidence in him, Albayalde replied: “I really don’t know. I hope not because the President knows how we implement the campaign against illegal drugs. This is just a matter of perception.”? Albayalde said the exchanges between him and Magalong won’t affect the crackdown on narcotics. ?

“We will concentrate on the campaign against illegal drugs because this is the promise of the government, promise of the President to the Filipino people. We will not relent in this campaign against illegal drugs and we will not involve ourselves in this very childish exchange,” Albayalde said.?

“We always talk to our people. It’s up to them. We do our job, that’s what the President said. Do what is right and we do our job,” he added.