Amid calls for the removal of Philippine National Police chief Police Gen. Oscar Albayalde over the “ninja cop” controversy, President Duterte said yesterday he would need “clear proof” implicating the police official to the illegal drugs trade before deciding on his fate.
The President explained that he could not simply give a “knee-jerk” reaction to the issue, citing the importance of due process.
For now, Duterte acknowledged that Albayalde continues to enjoy his trust and confidence and is presumed innocent until proven guilty.
“We have to, you know, the presumption. Eh kung mga ‘yung criminal binibigyan mo ng presumption of innocence. You know, Albayalde is the PNP chief. Wala pa naman – give me a clear proof na talagang he was there on the take or was in the trafficking of drugs,” he said during a press conference upon arrival in Davao City from his official visit to Russia.
“I could not just do it in a knee jerk. I have to follow procedural due process and allow him time to answer. The right to be heard. It’s given to the criminals, to the kidnappers. It should be given to a general of the Philippine National Police,” he added.
Asked if he still trusts Albayalde, the President said he would have dismissed the national police chief if he no longer trusted him. “Well, that he is still there. Otherwise, I would have you know just – I would have told him to just go out. Wala pa naman. Just give me a proof kasi abogado ako eh,” he said. (Genalyn Kabiling)