Razon sworn in as PNP chief

PHILIPPINE NEWS SERVICE — DEPUTY Director General Avelino I. Razon Jr. yesterday took his oath as the 14th chief of the Philippine National Police and quickly bared his “Mamang Pulis” program to bring back the old glory of a cop respected by everybody on the street.

“Let us bring back the old glory of the police force when the mere sight of the man in uniform evoked respect and a feeling of safety and security among the citizenry. I want every man, woman and child on the street to feel safe because ‘Mamang Pulis’ is just around the corner. And I want the criminal elements in the street to think twice before striking because ‘Mamang Pulis’ is also just around the corner,” Razon said in his assumption speech.

Razon took over from now retired Director General Oscar C. Calderon.

President Macapagal-Arroyo and Interior Secretary Ronaldo V. Puno agreed with Razon. “I like the concept of ‘Mamang Pulis’,” said the President as she stressed the importance of close police links with the community.

Razon said that one way of moving the PNP forward is to implement a no-nonsense campaign against rogue officers.

“I say once more that there is absolutely no place for abusive behavior in the police service. Lawenforcers cannot be lawbreakers themselves. They are protectors, not oppressors of the people. We have gone a long way in ridding the police force of scalawags and misfits. And while there may be a few left of these undesirables, we shall not cease to find, identify and punish or remove them from the service. We want ‘Mamang Pulis’ to be loved by the citizenry and not loathed by them,” he said.

Razon said further moving the PNP forward through a comprehensive transformation program aimed at keeping the streets safe while promoting the welfare of members of the force will be his main thrust as the country’s top cop.

“My program to move the PNP forward will be basically the actualization of its old motto of ‘we serve and protect the community.’ Through this motto, we shall reinforce the servant leadership concept wherein we accept that we are servants first because we want to serve and protect,” Razon said.

The 54-year-old Razon said he will incorporate in his policy the continued implementation of the 10-year PNP Integrated Transformation Program which was started in 2003 by then PNP chief Hermogenes E. Ebdane, Jr. and pursued by former PNP chiefs Edgar B. Aglipay, Arturo C. Lomibao and Calderon.

“I will follow through with the prioritization of the 12 ‘quick win’ projects, specific action programs to include the four-point program thrust on anti-criminality, anti-insurgency, anti-terrorism and internal reforms to jumpstart the reform process for immediate results and positive impact on the PNP organization and the community,” he said.

Razon said he wants the full reduction of street crimes in the country specifically in Metro Manila and other urban areas where police units must increase their visibility through a combination of mobile, beat and foot patrols.

“The common ‘Tao’ gauges the peace and order situation on street crimes. Many citizens have become victims of pickpockets, snatchers, cellphone snatches and hold-up artists. In essence, through our integrated patrol system, a citizen should not be further than a kilometer from the nearest police unit or personnel on patrol,” he said.