Eleven cops who bad-mouthed new police chief Oscar Albayalde on Facebook will be sent to Abu Sayyaf’s island stronghold of Sulu.
“They have been relieved and reassigned to Sulu because Sulu lacks personnel for the maintenance of peace and security in that area,” said Director General Albayalde.
The officers were the first batch of policemen confronted by Albayalde in his office at Camp Crame today (Wednesday, May 9) for criticising him on a page for policemen on Facebook.
The personal attacks happened when he was still the head of the National Capital Region Police Office and sacked policemen caught sleeping on the job.
The critical messages angered Albayalde, and he ordered the identification of those responsible. He emphasised that there were proper channels to air grievances, and social media was not one of them.
“This is to prevent them from influencing others to do the same as what they have done does not bode well for the kind of discipline one is expected to have in the uniform service,” he added.
The strict new police chief said the repostings are part of efforts to purge the force of erring officers.
He also said that the 11 officers could not be trusted as personally attacking their superiors was a form of backstabbing.
However, he denied that their reassignment to Sulu was a form of personal punishment.
“Their reassignment, however, is not punitive and is never a form of punishment. They will be appropriately charged for conduct unbecoming of a police officer,” he said.
Aside from the 11 cops, at least 20 other officers have been called in to see their chief. It is not known if these others will also be sent to Sulu.
The deployment to the island comes as police and the military work to rescue two policewomen who were kidnapped last week.
In a similar way to today’s redeployments, last year more than 200 Manila policemen were sent to Basilan Island — another stronghold of Abu Sayyaf — for various misdeeds.