Almost 80% of Filipinos believe that 'ninja cops' exist in the police force

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, January 7) — Almost 80% of Filipinos believe that there are so-called “ninja cops” in the police force, according to the latest survey by the Social Weather Stations (SWS).

In its survey conducted on December 13-16, 78% of Filipinos believe the accusation that there are “ninja cops” or policemen who sold illegal drugs they seized from operations. Seven percent do not believe the accusations, while 15% are undecided about the matter.

The survey showed that the net belief in the accusation that there are “ninja cops” in the police force is highest in Metro Manila at +77, followed by Balance Luzon at +71, the Visayas at +69 , and Mindanao at +65. Balance Luzon refers to areas in Luzon outside of Metro Manila.

The SWS poll also showed that 50% of respondents believe that former Philippine National Police chief General Oscar Albayalde was a “protector” of the scalawag policemen. Meanwhile, 13% do not believe the accusations and 37% were undecided.

SWS said that the net belief in the accusation that Albayalde protected the “ninja cops” is highest in the Visayas at +43, followed by Metro Manila at +40, Balance Luzon at +3, and Mindanao at +33.

Albayalde was put into hot seat last year following the Senate’s investigation into the alleged involvement of active policemen in the illegal drug trade at the New Bilibid Prison. The former police chief was accused of blocking the dismissal of the 13 policemen involved in an anti-illegal drug operation in Pampanga.

Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency Director General Aaron Aquino testified that Albayalde asked him not to dismiss the policemen involved in the controversial anti-drug raid in 2013.

Albayalde eventually resigned from his post amid the allegations.

SWS also said that 23% think that there are many cops involved in illegal drug trade, while 44% answered “somewhat many.” Twenty-eight percent of the respondents, on the other hand, believe that the number of “ninja cops” in the police force are “little” and 3% said there were no “ninja cops.”

Meanwhile, President Rodrigo Duterte said in a chance interview with reporters that PNP has always been problem to any administration due to corruption.

"Historically, the police, the PNP has always been a problem for any administration. Alam ninyo yan. And I think that with the remaining two years, if I can just fix a third of what’s bugging the PNP, and that is corruption," said Duterte.

The non-commissioned survey was conducted through face-to-face interviews with 1,200 adults nationwide. It has sampling error margins of ±3% for national percentages, and ±6% each for Metro Manila, Balance Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.