Bacalzo to be replaced by Belarmino soon?
THERE are persistent talks being spread in and around the PNP headquarters at Camp Crame that PNP chief Gen. Raul Bacalzo, said to be a lackadaisical PNP chief, will be replaced by PNP deputy chief for operations Benjamin Belarmino by the end of this month.
The rumors, allegedly being peddled and fanned by subordinates and hired PR men of Belarmino is creating a life of its own as Bacalzo is now under fire, solely blamed for the reported breakdown in discipline among the ranks in the PNP.
Bacalzo cannot escape the fact that it is under his watch that some ranking and fresh recruits of the PNP were reported and documented to be involved in rape, kidnap-for-ransom, drug use and trafficking, hijacking, murder, and other heinous crimes.
Belarmino’s camp, I was told, is now engaged in a massive campaign to vilify and “crucify” Bacalazo’s acts or inactions that led to the breakdown of discipline among some PNP men and the retrogression of the PNP’s much-vaunted Transformation Program aimed to correct the agency’s organizational and systemic dysfunctions.
Belarmino, a classmate of Bacalzo from the PMA Class 1977, is set to retire on February 16 next year and he has to “make it” before his coming natal day to avoid the “less than one year in service ban” and qualify him to occupy the Chief PNP post.
The “it’s now or never” Belarmino will try his best to get Malacanang’s attention and hopefully get P-Noy’s nod to have Bacalzo replaced by January 31, the PNP’s 19th anniversary celebrations which is expected to be attended by the President.
I don’t think Belarmino will win in his bid. Many of his mistahs are not convinced he will become a good PNP chief. But the Palace should also move for Bacalzo’s replacement. We don’t need his lackadaisical approach in handling the PNP’s day-to-day plans and programs.
The still active duty members of the Philippine Military Class 1978 and 1979 are “silently” griping and grumbling on the sad reality that none of them are being considered by the present dispensation to become the next PNP chief when Bacalzo (or Belarmino?) retires from the service.
Deputy Director General Raul Castaneda, a member of the PMA Class 1978 and Chief Superintendent Samuel Pagdilao, a member of PMA Class 1979, are both qualified contenders and are being rooted by their respective mistahs to be the next Chief PNP.
Sad to say, their mistahs and supporters’ excitement and enthusiasm had been doused with cold water because former PNP public information officer, Tarlac provincial director and now NCRPO chief Director Nicanor Bartolome is being groomed as Bacalzo’s replacement.
Bartolome, I was informed is in a hurry to get the plum PNP post. He does not have the luxury of time as he is set to retire soon. He has to set aside the seniority issue raised by some members of PMA Classes 1978 and 1979 and has courted the support of influential people within and outside of the Palace to attain his supreme objective. A done deal, Boss Nick?
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