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Purisima rates himself a 9, Grace Poe gives him a 4


Philippine National Police chief Director General Alan Purisima gave himself a nine for his efforts in overseeing the PNP, but Senator Grace Poe believes his credibility was way below as she found his testimony before a Senate inquiry on Tuesday short of the "entire truth" that she was after.

Poe, the chair of the Senate Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs, was particularly put off by Purisima's acceptance of the P11-million renovation of the PNP chief's official residence inside Camp Crame and his purchase of a heavily discounted P1.5-million sports utility vehicle.
 
“Dapat mag-iingat kasi ang mga miyembro ng gobyerno na pag may nagbibigay ng discount sa ’yo, pag may binibili ka, bagama’t malaki ang discount ‘nun, iisipin mo, ano ba ang kapalit nito?" Poe told reporters after the hearing.

"Baka maging ehemplo kasi sa mas nakababatang pulis na, 'ay pwede ko pala gamitin ang aking pakikipagkaibigan o tanggapan para magkaroon ng ganoong klase ng benepisyo’,” she added.

Poe added that doubts on Purisima’s credibility would affect how the panel would draft its report, which she intends to release in two weeks.

Nine out of 10

During the hearing, Poe asked Purisima to rate his efforts for the PNP.
 
“Your honor, I would rate myself a nine,” said Purisima.
 
In a press conference after the hearing, Poe said she would give Purisima a rating of four.
 
“I’m not convinced that he’s telling the truth entirely. Maybe there’s partial truth to it, but not the entire truth,” Poe said.

The inquiry was initially in aid of legislation regarding the PNP modernization program. Poe included the allegations raised against Purisima after he failed to attend the committee hearings.
 
“There are certain inconsistencies [in your statements] that are undeniable. Maybe it is just a matter of communication, but if people see that you are not very transparent, their suspicions will grow with regards to whether or not you are actually telling the truth,” Poe told Purisima before adjourning the hearing.

Palace backs PNP chief

This developed as Malacañang on Tuesday backed Purisima's decision not to quit his post amid accusations of hidden wealth and irregularities in a construction project inside the national police headquarters.
 
On Monday afternoon, Purisima met with President Benigno Aquino III, a day before he faced the Senate, Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. confirmed at a press briefing.
 
Coloma maintained that those calling for Purisima's resignation should let the PNP chief undergo judicial processes first.
 
"Hindi naman ho yata makatwiran na humantong sa mga konklusyon na ang resulta ay magkakaroon ng bahid o alinlangan sa integridad sa katauhan ng isang public official na nakabatay lamang sa mga paratang," he said when asked if Purisima should resign.

Prado for just P1.5 million

During the hearing at the Senate, Poe cast doubt on the propriety of Purisima's purchase of a Land Cruiser that usually costs between P4 million to P7 million. Purisima said he bought his SUV for just P1.5 million.
 
Purisima said he got the vehicle for a lower price because he bought it directly from a dealer in San Fernando, Pampanga, who gave him a big discount.
 
“Di ko sinasabing kasalanan niyo pero ang diskwentong ganyang kalaki kasi, ang halaga niyan P6M-P7M tapos nabenta sa inyo ng P1.5M lang, iisipin niyo bakit nabenta sa akin?” Poe said.
 
She asked Purisima if the dealer has a contract with the PNP, to which the national police chief replied in the negative.
 
“Wala naman po. Yung [sasakyan]  po ay Land Cruiser na Prado,” he said.
 
“So Prado ito, kung sabihin nating P4 million ito, malaki pa rin ang diskwento. Inuulit ko lang kasi ito(ng SALN) ay public document para masuri ang kayamanan ng ating kawani ng gobyerno,” Poe said.

Need to re-assess Nueva Ecija property
 
The senator also questioned Purisima regarding his house and lot in San Leonardo, Nueva Ecija.
 
Purisima said he acquired the land in 1998 and he initially paid P150,000 for it. Poe asked why the acquisition year stated in Purisima’s SALN was 2002. The PNP chief it was only in 2002 when the construction of the house started.
 
Purisima said he shelled out P3.2 million for the construction of the house, using his salary as a police official and the income of his family.
 
He said that as PNP chief, he is receiving a monthly salary of P107,000. His wife is a treasury examiner for an insurance company of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. They also have a trucking business.
 
“Pakonti-konti ang construction niyan, may mga savings kami, yan ang ginagamit namin,” he said.
 
Poe asked Purisima to have his property re-assessed, as his SALN states that it is worth only P3.75 million but others say it is actually worth P50 million.
 
“Siguro dapat pag-aralan ninyo na, ipa-reassess ninyo dahil may lumulutang na halaga na P50 million ito at kung sasagot kayo sa Ombudsman ay itatanong din naman sa inyo ito,” the senator said.

Renovate the hospital instead

As regards the P11-million renovation of the PNP chief's official quarters, or the so-called White House inside Camp Crame, Senator Sergio Osmeña III drew from Purisima the response that the PNP General Hospital had several needs that had yet to receive allocations from the national government.
 
Osmeña asked Purisima if it did not cross his mind to have his friends donate to the PNP-GH instead of spending for the renovation of the quarters of the PNP chief.
 
“Ang hospital dyan dinadala ang wounded na tauhan natin. D'yan ginagamot ang mga may sakit na pulis natin. Your offer na pagpapagawa sa 'yo ng White House, hindi niyo ba naisip na pagawan na lang ng mas maayos na ospital mula sa donasyon?” Osmeña said.
 
Purisima said the focus of the donors was the quarters for the PNP chief, which was prone to flooding.
 
Poe asked Purisima regarding the Kiangan Hall, the quarters of the PNP members, which also lacked certain equipment.
 
“Mismong mga punda ng unan, kulang kulang, kaya importante ang deed of donations kasi maraming items na kulang sa PNP. Dapat may dignidad ang tinitirhan nyo pero pwede namang mas maliit ang ginawa doon,” Poe said. 

Donors wanted to remain nameless
 
Purisima said the donors for the P11-million renovation wanted to remain anonymous so they initially refused to execute a deed of donation.
 
Poe asked Purisima why the deed of donation for the building was only executed in September 2014 when the latter admitted that the renovation started in May 2013, and it was turned over to the PNP on December 2013.
 
“Ang deed of donation ay inasikaso lang nitong mga nakaraan dahil ayaw naman nila maging official ito. Ang mga donors personally kakilala ko sila pero ayaw sana nila lumabas in public, kaya lang nung lumabas ang isyu na ito ay sinabi ko na mandatory sa kanilang part na lumabas na sila para ma-legalize na ito,” Purisima said.
 
Interior Secretary Manuel Roxas II last week said the Department of Interior and Local Government was looking into the background of the donors that contributed resources for the renovation of the PNP chief's official quarters.
 
They were identified as Carlos Gonzales for ULTICON Builders, Lawyer Alexander Lopez for Pacific Concrete Corporation, and Christopher Pastrana of CAPP industries. —NB/KBK, GMA News