The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) on Thursday said it will study the measure seeking to separate the Internal Affairs Service (IAS) from the Philippine National Police (PNP) chain-of-command.
DILG Undersecretary and Spokesperson Jonathan Malaya said that while the agency supports measures to strengthen IAS, they have to study the repercussions of the measure.
“We need to study the matter carefully. Would it be possible that we just make modification and the command and reporting line to the chief PNP and SILG (Secretary Eduardo Año)? So what I think Sec. Ano is saying here is it may not be necessary to remove IAS completely from PNP but make them report directly to chief PNP and the SILG and once a decision has been made, it is immediately executory,” Malaya told reporters on Thursday when sought for a comment.
Malaya said the IAS will be an important tool of the PNP chief to eradicate scalawags and rotten eggs if supported and supervised properly.
He also said the measure will affect functions of the National Police Commission (Napolcom) as the IAS will take over its function on deciding administrative cases.
On Wednesday, IAS Director General Alfegar Triambulo said the first step is to limit the mandate of the Napolcom as either a constitutional policy-making body or an administrator of the PNP.
Triambulo, however, said they still want to be attached with the DILG, together with the Napolcom.
Triambulo added they could have initiated investigation against then PNP chief, Gen. Oscar Albayalde, amid the issues hounding him on drug recycling allegations.
But since IAS is under the Office of the Chief PNP, any intention to investigate the chief would appear to be futile since it is the sitting Chief PNP that would review and approve any of its recommendations.
Some of the reforms implemented in the past to ensure IAS independence include having a civilian as its head.
Under House Bill 3065, PBA party-list Rep. Jericho Nograles proposes that the IAS be removed from the supervision and control of the PNP chief, and transfer the agency under the direct supervision of the Secretary of the Interior and Local Government.
Apart from investigating and adjudicating administrative wrongdoings of PNP personnel, the proposed measure also seeks to empower the IAS to have recommendatory powers in the selection and promotion of PNP personnel, including the PNP chief.
The IAS could also assist the Office of the Ombudsman and other PNP Disciplinary Offices in cases involving PNP personnel.
It can also recommend the admission to the witness protection program of the Department of Justice of witnesses who are vital to the prosecution of PNP personnel involved in criminal cases. (PNA)