Iloilo solon to Philippine National Police: ‘Sorry’

December 29, 2018
Richard Garin
Richard Garin

ILOILO Rep. Oscar Garin has reiterated his public apology to the Philippine National Police for mauling a  police officer.

“I sincerely  apologize on what I earlier did. I reiterate my apologies for my actions, which I take full responsibility for. May I also clarify that my actions are not directed to the PNP as an institution, or against its officers and personnel. My actions were an unfortunate display of extreme frustration towards one, single PNP personnel who I believe committed a great disservice to the people of Guimbal,” said Garin who was with his father, Guimbal Mayor Oscar Garin Sr., a former Iloilo congressman, and several bodyguards, when he allegedly mauled PO3 Federico Macaya.

Last Wednesday, the Garins summoned Macaya for allegedly making a victim of a physical assault incident to drop criminal charges against a suspect.

During the confrontation, Rep. Garin, husband of former Iloilo and ex-Health Sec.  Janette Garin, allegedly attacked the police officer after being disarmed and put on handcuffs.

It was reported that the lawmaker allegedly held Macaya at gunpoint while kicking the police officer and also spit on him.

Garin said he was disappointed that Macaya asked a victim to withdraw his complaint against a suspect who “hit a child with a beer on the head” during the celebration of “Disyembre sa Guimbal” last December 22.

“It would have been a manageable incident. However, the suspect turned out to be the same one known to police as a habitual delinquent. In fact, the suspect has a pending case for murder, which was filed when he was only 15 years old. In spite of that, and instead of filing a case on this recent incident, the victim was made to sign an affidavit of desistance by this one police for withdrawal of complaint. And this, in spite as well of the clear provisions that corresponding complaint be lodged in court. To me, that move of the said police officer is a betrayal of public trust and a clear manifestation of his abuse of power. What he did is a clear violation of a PNP policy not to meddle or negotiate in behalf of a party involved in a criminal case,” said Rep. Garin.

Upon a direct order from President Rodrigo Duterte, the Iloilo Police Provincial Office on Thursday filed slight physical injury, slander by deed, direct assault upon an agent of authority, grave coercion, serious illegal detention, and scandal against the Garins.

Also filed against the Garins were administrative complaints that include grave misconduct, oppression, abuse of authority, conduct unbecoming, and conduct prejudicial to the best interest of public service.

PNP chief Director General Oscar Albayalde said all Permits to Carry Firearms outside of Residence and License to Own and Possess Firearms issued to the Garins have been cancelled.

Earlier, Interior Sec. Eduardo Año said the Department of the Interior and Local Government will file criminal and administrative charges against Mayor Garin before the Ombudsman or any court of law, saying nobody should take the law in his own hands.

Año accused the Garins of abusing their authority and displaying arrogance, “a conduct unbecoming of men in authority and well-deserving of punishment.”