Saturday, March 1, 2014

Tarlac cops hit for harassing scribe

TARLAC CITY – The leadership of the Central Luzon Media Association yesterday lambasted policemen from the Tarlac Police Provincial Office for allegedly harassing a publisher of a local newsweekly and barring him entry inside the office of the provincial police director.

          Bonifacio Dacayanan, publisher of Facts and Figures Newsweekly based in this city, said the incident took place at around 1 pm last February 26 when he visited the TPPO headquarters in Barangay San Vicente, Camp Macabulos here to inquire about the status of a previously arranged appointment with Senior Superintendent Alex Sintin, newly installed provincial director.

          Dacayanan said two policemen manning the gate of the police camp whom he identified as a certain Police Officer 1 Bautista and one PO1 Rombaoa asked him for his concerns.

When he informed them he was going to meet Sintin, the two lawmen asked him to present his identification card. After doing so, he said the lawmen gave him clearance to proceed to the police headquarters.       

But a few moments later, Dacayanan said one of them called him out and stopped him. The lawman then took his ID and ran towards the headquarters supposedly to show it to officials at the camp.

He said while holding him at the camp gate, others who passed the gate, including ordinary people, were allowed freely inside without being subjected to such harassment. 

After a few minutes, the lawman returned with the ID and finally allowed him to enter the camp.

Dacayanan said prior to the incident, he and Sintin had held initial talks on the possible coordination between the PNP and the media in Tarlac.

Dacayanan said it was not the first time he was maltreated by authorities. He said he received a similar treatment from the Northern Luzon Command (Nolcom) when he visited the military headquarters in Barangay San Miguel in Camp Servillano Aquino here.   

He narrated his experience during the directorate meeting of the CLMA at a local restaurant here Friday night.

        CLMA president Tony Vallejo asked Chief Superintendent Raul  Petrasanta, regional director of the Philippine National Police Regional Office 3, to order a full-dress investigation on the incident to prevent a possible whitewash by the TPPO.

          “We condemn the strongest terms this dastardly treatment of the members of the fourth estate, particularly our own. They ought to accord respect to media practitioners. Authorities should do something about it,” Vallejo said. (Manny Galvez)   

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