REVISIT PROTOCOLS. Philippine National Police chief, Gen. Archie Gamboa (right), together with PNP Internal Affairs Service Inspector General Alfegar Triambulo (2nd from right), and PNP spokesperson Brig. Gen. Bernard Banac (left), welcomes Armed Forces of the Philippines Inspector General, Maj. Gen. Franco Nemecio Gacal at Camp Crame, Quezon City on Monday (July 6, 2020). The police and military officials met in a bid to revisit the operational protocols following the recent shooting incident in Sulu. (Photo by CLTC)

MANILA – Ranking police and military officials on Monday met to tackle proposal to form a board of inquiry that will revisit the operational procedures to prevent a repeat of the shooting incident that killed four soldiers in Jolo, Sulu.

Philippine National Police (PNP) chief, Gen. Archie Francisco Gamboa, said that PNP Internal Affairs Service Inspector General Alfegar Triambulo and Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) Inspector General, Maj. Gen. Franco Nemecio Gacal, already held a meeting at the police headquarters in Camp Crame, Quezon City.

In press briefing in Camp Crame, Gamboa said Gacal and Triambulo will “thresh out organizational matters in the creation of the board of inquiry”.

He said the primary goal of the board is to determine operational lapses and how to improve the operational procedures of the AFP and PNP as has been agreed with AFP Chief of Staff, Gen. Felimon Santos, Jr.

For Gamboa, the primary concern on the incident was coordination between the two agencies and that it would be the core subject of the board inquiry.

This time, Gamboa added, the PNP and AFP would look at the communication aspect from strategic down to the tactical level.

“Lalawakan namin ito [We will widen this] including the study of what’s the real situation in Jolo, Sulu so that all of these things can be considered,” Gamboa said.

He said both the police and military have only one enemy, the terrorists.

Gamboa clarified that the board of inquiry would not look at the criminal and administrative aspect of the Sulu incident as it was now in the hands of the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI).

“Of course, we do not want to preempt the results of the investigation of the NBI. So ito ngayon organizational lang kung ano yung commanders’ intent (So this is only organizational, on what are the commanders’ intent). Me and the AFP, through their chief of staff, have agreed to come up with this board of inquiry primarily to determine the operational lapses and how we can improve our operational procedures,” he said.

Meanwhile, Gamboa directed Brig. Gen. Manuel Abu, Bangsamoro Region Police chief, to transport the accused nine policemen within this week to Camp Crame.

“So I am now putting the responsibility to the regional director of Bangsamoro Autonomous Region (BAR), Brigadier General Manuel Abu, to bring the policemen anytime this week to Camp Crame. The Regional Director will serve as the escort,” Gamboa said. “We are expecting that within the week, all of them will test negative (of coronavirus) so that they will be brought together here at Camp Crame.”

President Rodrigo Duterte earlier directed the NBI to speed up the investigation into the shooting incident on June 29.

Slain in the incident were Maj. Marvin Indammog, 39; Capt. Irwin Managuelod, 33; Sgt. Jaime Velasco, 38; and Cpl. Abdal Asula, 33. They were tailing four terrorist suicide bombers when the shooting happened.

Duterte acknowledged that the incident has created animosity between the AFP and PNP, “which is not good because, in the end, it would be the people (who) will bear the brunt of all these things”.

He told the military not to hold a grudge against the police as “there is a more important task to do and that is to protect the people of the Philippines”.

Duterte told both the military and the police to wait for the result of the investigation being conducted by the NBI, which will be made public “so that everybody will understand the situation”.

Duterte told the involved cops that whatever would be the result, those proven liable would be held accountable, Gamboa said. (PNA)