BAGUIO CITY – Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan expressed his disappointment over the unexpected relief of Baguio City Police Office (BCPO) City Director Police Col. Eliseo T. Tanding right in the middle of the campaign period for still unknown reasons that caught city officials by surprise.
Tanding was suddenly relived from his post as BCPO City Director and replaced by Police Col. Allen Rey Co who came from the personnel holding and accounting unit of the Police Regional Office (PRO) in the Cordillera.
The local chief executive pointed out it it is unfortunate that a good number of BCPO officers who passed through the local screening process have been unceremoniously relieved by higher authorities without the supposed coordination and consultation with the local government.
“Peace and order is not only the concern of the police. Local officials have also a stake in the maintenance of peace and order because they are the ones that are being blamed by their constituents of the peace and order situation in their place is not good,” Mayor Domogan stressed.
The city mayor reportedly called up Brig. Gen. Israel Efraim Dickson to air his disappointment over the untimely and unceremonious relief of the BCPO City Director who was selected after subjecting himself to the stringent screening process that was put in place by the local government so that deserving police officers will be the ones to lead the Baguio’s Finest.
According to him, it is unfortunate that the relief is being done right in the middle of the campaign period when city officials are busy, thus, they cannot do the needed interventions that will prevent the untimely and unceremonious relief of a police official who had been working hard to sustain the gains of peace and order initiatives that made Baguio city as one of the ten Safest Cities in Southeast Asia.
Another issue raised by Domogan in the untimely and unceremonious transfer of the BCPO City Director was the fact that Tanding’s successor is not even familiar with the city which casts doubt on his ability to lead the local police force without understanding the prevailing culture in the city as well as its geography for better appreciation of the overall situation.
Domogan underscored the fact that there should always be close coordination and consultation between ranking police officers and city officials in the relief and transfer of BCPO officers so that the harmonious relationship between the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the local government will be enhanced.
Baguio City was able to set a precedent in the selection of BCPO City Director wherein instead of the local chief executive handpicking from the shortlist submitted by the PNP, it will be the local screening committee created by Mayor Domogan that will subject the applicants to the stringent screening process and whoever will emerge with the highest accumulated score will be the one that will be recommended for appointment.
Domogan has always involved the participation of concerned government agencies and offices as well as the private sector in the selection of the next BCPO City Director because of the need to have a consensus in ascertaining who will be the most qualified senior police officer who will lead the local police force. By Dexter A. See