PRO-6: Espenido not qualified for police director post

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(File photo) Police Chief Inspector Jovie Espenido

Iloilo (CNN Philippines, August 30) — The Region 6 police office does not believe Police Chief Inspector Jovie Espenido is qualified to become police director of either Iloilo City or the province.

Superintendent Gilbert Gorero, PRO-6 spokesperson, said Espenido can only assume post as chief of police of stations under the Iloilo City Police Office (ICPO) or Iloilo Police Provincial Office (IPPO).

"Iloilo City is a highly-urbanized city. To head the ICPO, a police officer should have the rank of Senior Superintendent. Unlike Iloilo City, Ozamiz City is just a component city of Misamis Occidental," Gorero clarified.

Gorero also confirmed Espenido's assignment to PRO-6 but it depends on PRO-6 Director Police C/Supt. Cesar Hawthorne Binag on what position to give.

"It can be chief officer of a station, Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA-6), or a chosen town," Gorero said.

On Monday, President Rodrigo Duterte said he would assign Espenido to Iloilo City, which he called the "most shabulized" province in the country, with its mayor, Jed Mabilog, also named in the "narco-list."

READ: Duterte to assign controversial police chief to Iloilo

Mabilog has denied the allegations, saying that he is willing to subject himself to any investigation.

On Tuesday, Mabilog said he welcomed the assignment of Espenido to Iloilo City, citing that the latter will be the key to belie the allegations about him and the city.

Dela Rosa: Let Espenido stay in Ozamis City

PNP Chief Ronald Dela Rosa said if he had his way, he would let Chief Inspector Jovie Espenido stay in Ozamiz City while he is still fixing the drug problem in the area.

The PNP Chief would discuss concerns about the appointment of Espenido as Iloilo City police chief with President Duterte today.

Dela Rosa said there's a clamor among residents of Ozamiz City to keep Espenido as their police chief.

Also, based on PNP rules, the position of city police chief of a highly urbanized area like Iloilo City should be given to a police officer with a Senior Superintendent rank.

This is why on his appointment paper, Espenido is just the officer-in-charge of the Iloilo City Police Office.

But they respect the order of the President and believes it is not a form of micromanaging the PNP.

Espenido was the chief of police assigned to Albuera, Leyte and Ozamiz City where the two mayors, Reynaldo Parojinog of Ozamiz City,Misamis Occidental and Rolando Espinosa Sr. of Albuera, Leyte were killed in a separate police operations.

CNN Philippines correspondent Gerg Cahiles and stringer Elyrose Naorbe contributed to this report.