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Solon says transferring IAS to NAPOLCOM will prevent ‘bata-bata’ system in PNP

A lawmaker on Tuesday said transferring the supervision and control of the Internal Affairs Service (IAS) from the Philippine National Police (PNP) to the National Police Commission (NAPOLCOM) would prevent the "bata-bata" system in the police organization.

At the House Committee on Public Order and Safety hearing, committee chairperson Masbate Representative Narciso Bravo Jr. said the proposal to transfer IAS would "improve greatly the integrity of disciplinary mechanism" within the PNP.

Bravo pointed out that the proliferation of the "bata-bata" system in the police force prevents the conviction of rogue police officers.

"Puwedeng maiwasan na 'yung mga bata-bata system sa PNP, alam naman nating nandiyan... so kung mayroong mga kasalanang nagagawa 'yung mga abusadong pulis, minsan naaabsuwelto dahil 'yung mga boss nila eh nasa mga very influential positions na 'yun ang nagdedecide kung iko-convict o i-a-absuwelto ang pulis," Bravo said.

"I guess di na direktang in control ang mga opisyal sa kanilang subordinates," he added.

In 2019, the late NAPOLCOM Vice Chairman and Executive Officer Rogelio Casurao said transferring IAS to NAPOLCOM would strengthen the law enforcement powers of the latter.

"Without much thinking, aangat ang kanyang estado as an independent body now dahil sa IAS is already with the National Police Commission," Casurao had said.

During the hearing, IAS Inspector General Alfegar Triambulo welcomed the proposal to strengthen the IAS, saying that making the office an independent one is already long overdue.

"Indeed, the reform and reorganization of the Internal Affairs Service into a full-fledged, fully-functioning and independent agency is long overdue," Triambulo said.

"We implore the support of all members of Congress for this worthy endeavor. Surely, this bill will be a legacy when it becomes a law," he added. — RSJ, GMA News