MANILA – Malacañang welcomed the news that Philippine National Police (PNP) chief, Gen. Archie Gamboa is now in stable condition after figuring in a helicopter crash in San Pedro, Laguna on Thursday morning.
“The Office of the President is glad that Police General Gamboa is safe and suffered no serious injuries from the accident,” Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said in a statement.
Panelo said Palace is monitoring the developments following the crash and praying for the swift recovery of Gamboa and his companions.
“All of them are now being attended to by doctors and we are hoping — as we are praying — for their swift recovery,” he said.
He also asked the public to refrain from making speculations relative to the incident as investigation is ongoing.
Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Secretary Martin Andanar also sent his well wishes to Gamboa and other passengers.
“I pray for the immediate recovery of PNP Chief, Gen. Archie Gamboa and the rest of the passengers rescued from the chopper,” Andanar said in a message to reporters.
Gamboa and his companions were onboard a police chopper after inspecting the impounding area of the Highway Patrol Group (HGP) when it crashed in San Pedro, Laguna, according to the PNP Public Information Office.
He was scheduled for a conference with top police officials in Calamba, Laguna on the same day.
Aside from Gamboa, onboard the helicopter heading towards Camp Vicente Lim in Calamba were PNP spokesperson, Brig. Gen. Bernard Banac, Director for Comptrollership, Maj. Gen. Jovic Ramos and Director for Intelligence, Maj. Gen. Mariel Magaway, among others.
Gamboa was seated on the right side of the eight-seater Bell chopper that went down on its left side and was first to be pulled out from the helicopter, HGP special operations division chief, Capt. Rannie Estilles said.
Laguna Provincial Police director, Lt. Col. Serafin Petalio II said they were immediately brought to a nearby hospital for treatment.
Gamboa and five other injured police officials were transferred to St. Luke’s Medical Center in Taguig City at around 10 a.m.
However, two police generals were transferred to the Asian Hospital in Muntinlupa City and are now in critical condition.
Reports showed that the accident was caused by the helicopter getting in contact with a high-tension wire due to poor visibility.
The accident took place roughly two months after Gamboa took his oath as new PNP chief and received his four-star rank before President Rodrigo Duterte. (ia/PNA)