Who will Duterte bless?

October 14, 2019

WILL it be Gamboa, Cascolan, Eleazar or Danao? Or will it be another ‘Dark Horse’?

That’s the 64,000 dollar question which will be answered by President Duterte this week as he chooses a new Philippine National Police chief who will replace embattled General Oscar D. Albayalde ahead of his November 8 retirement day.

Gamboa is newly-designated PNP Deputy Chief for Administration, Lieutenant General Archie Francisco F. Gamboa, a lawyer who is now the chair of the PNP National Headquarters Bids and Award Committee tasked to oversee the graft-free and quality procurement process of the national police force.

Gamboa was a former PNP Director for Comptrollership who is known to have initiated fiscal reforms in the PNP and became a key member of the PNP Oversight Committee tasked to study the PNP placement and promotion system during the term of former PNP chief-now Senator Ronald ‘Bato’ M. dela Rosa and later Gen. Albayalde. Gamboa will be retiring on September 2, 2020.

Cascolan is new PNP Deputy Chief for Operations, Lt. Gen. Camilo Pancratius P. Cascolan, a seasoned police intelligence and operations officer who commanded a number of key police units and who, as the PNP Director for Operations became the architect of the Oplan: Double Barrel  and the Enhanced Managing Police Operations of the PNP which was used in waging a successful war against illegal drug trafficking and abuse.

Cascolan had a short-lived stint at the National Capital Region Police Office in 2018. He was designated as NCRPO chief on April  23, 2018 by then newly-appointed PNP chief, Gen. Albayalde but he was known to have developed a rift with the PNP chief when he initiated an ‘8-hour work policy’ in the NCRPO which went against the policy of Albayalde when he was still the Metro Manila police director.

On June 1, 2018,  the official was relieved  barely one-and-a-half-month after assuming his post. When he relinquished his post, he thanked his men and asked them to continue to serve with a smile. He was eventually designated as director of the PNP Civil Security Group and later the PNP Chief Directorial Staff. Cascolan will retire on November 10, 2020.

Both Gamboa and Cascolan are classmates from Philippine Military Academy ‘Sinagtala’ Class of 1986 of Sen. dela Rosa and Gen. Albayalde.

Eleazar is Major Gen. Guillermo Lorenzo T. Eleazar, the member of PMA ‘Hinirang’ Class of 1987 who rose to national prominence as director of the PNP Anti-Cybercrime Group, the Quezon City Police District, the Police Regional Office 4-A in Calabarzon region and later as NCRPO director.

Eleazar replaced Cascolan and quickly buckled down to work, work and work. Last Saturday, he bade goodbye to his officers and men and the media who covered his day-to-day activities without let-up.

After 18 months of a successful stint as Metro Manila police chief, the official was designated as new PNP Chief Directorial Staff, the 4th highest position in the PNP and a post that would give him his 3rd-star.

Last Saturday, Eleazar said that ‘today marks the end of my stint as Regional Director of NCRPO. It was a challenging ride all the way, made joyful mostly because my media friends joined me every step of the way.’

“It was you, my media friends who let the public know that there are now men in police uniform that they can trust and turn to for their reports, requests and redresses. It is this that I value and thank you so much for,” he added. Eleazar will retire on November 13, 2021.

Danao is Manila Police District director, Brig. Gen. Vicente D. Danao Jr. of PMA ‘Sambisig’ Class of 1991. He is a known tough officer who is closely associated with President Duterte, he having served as a Davao City police chief when the President was still its mayor.

Retiring on October 8, 2023, Danao is the youngest of the four top candidates and is known to be the closest to the heart of the President. It is widely known that the President had long voiced his wish to have Danao as the director of the Manila’s Finest which assist the Presidential Security Group in securing the President and Malacañang Palace.