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Sen. Panfilo “Ping” M. Lacson rallied yesterday behind President Duterte’s order to dismantle police checkpoints nationwide, lamenting that fixed checkpoints have become a fertile ground for police extortion.
“Fixed checkpoints are a breeding place for extorting policemen. They should not have been deployed in the first place. I myself dismantled all fixed checkpoints when I was CPNP and we were very successful in our anti-kotong operations. Legitimate traders of goods were very thankful and appreciative during those times,” Lacson said a day after the Chief Executive directed the dismantling of all police checkpoints nationwide.
However, the former Philippine National Police chief proposed that mobile checkpoints be retained, and even enhanced to complement the President’s war on illegal drugs and firearm smuggling.
“Mobile checkpoints are more effective since they are not expected by those who transport illegal drugs, firearms, and other contrabands. Hence, they should be retained, even enhanced,” Lacson said.
Duterte issued the order during the launching of the Comprehensive Reform and Development Agenda at the Shariff Kabunsuan Cultural Complex in Cotabato City.
He mentioned that the security checkpoints of the Philippine Army, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, and the Philippine National Police have caused travel delays in Mindanao.
Duterte said instead of causing delays for travelers, checkpoints should be set up for a particular purpose, like when running after high-value targets or suspects. (Charissa M. Luci)