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34 police chiefs in Bicol relieved

LEGAZPI CITY (PNA) – Thirty four police chiefs in Bicol has been relieved since Tuesday after failing to meet targets on the implementation of “Oplan Double Barrel”, a nationwide anti-criminality and anti-illegal drug campaign of the Philippine National Police (PNP).

Chief Supt. Ramon Melvin Buenafe, director of Police Regional Office-Region 5 (PRO5) based in Camp Simeon Ola in this city, in an order announced the relief of 34 chiefs of police or COPs “for unsatisfactory performance in carrying out Oplan Double Barrel.”

“The relief order took effect on Tuesday after national police evaluators found out that these police officers failed to meet their performance targets in the implementation of Oplan Double Barrel,” he said.

Buenafe, in an interview, said the affected COPs would “undergo further refresher course on police operations at the Personnel and Human Resource and Development Office here (at Camp Simeon Ola).”

Affected by the revamp were the COPs in the four towns and two cities in Albay, two cities and five towns in Camarines Sur, six towns in Camarines Norte and five towns each in the provinces of Catanduanes, Masbate and Sorsogon.

In Albay, the COPs affected by the relief order were the chiefs of police in the cities of Legazpi and Tabaco and the towns of Manito, Guinobatan, Sto. Domingo and Rapu-Rapu.

Also, as the war against illegal drugs rages, the Bicol Philippine National Police has begun purging its ranks of those who were proven to be “users” of illegal drugs, obstructing police operations and coddling illegal drug peddlers.

Since the start of the campaign last July 1 under the campaign tagged by the Police Regional Office in Bicol (PRO5) as “Oplan Tokhang” and “Double Barrel”, some 23 policemen have been placed under investigation.

As this developed, Albay Governor Al Francis Bichara has signed Thursday the endorsement of Senior Supt. Antonino Cirujales as the new director of the Albay Provincial Police Office, replacing Senior Supt. Celso Arcueno. (With a report from Niño N. Luces)