Amid safety concerns: PNP open to media covering police on anti-drug ops

Image from Dionard Carlos' Facebook account
  • PNP okay with media covering anti-drug operations as per orders of the president
  • Spokesman said PNP has long accommodated media in the past
  • However, he said they will implement security measures to ensure media’s safety

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine National Police (PNP) have expressed willingness to abide by President Rodrigo Duterte’s order directing them to have media cover anti-drug operations.

“At the outset, the PNP is open to media presence and participation in police operations with their safety as our primodial concern,” GMA News quoted PNP spokesman Chief Supt. Dionardo Carlos as saying.

Carlos said the PNP has let media accompany its operatives in the past, and document the aftermath of anti-drug operations.

“The PNP has been accommodating media presence,” he said. “’Pag anti-drug operation, required tayo ng batas [During anti-illegal drug operations, we are required by law], na immediately after the operation and it’s safe already, let the media come in, document it and be part ng pag-account nung (accounting of the) inventory ng mga [of the] evidence na recovered from the scene.”

At the same time, Carlos said they are still formulating procedures to ensure the security of the media who cover such operations.

“Our primordial concern when we have the media with us during operation is your safety and security,” he said. “[There were] so many operations that the media were there with us. However, if we see that there is going to be danger posed to the members of the media, hindi namin kayo isusulong doon para kayo ang unang tamaan [we will not put you there to be shot first].”

Duterte issued the order in a bid to dispel allegations of an existing state policy ordering law enforcers to kill suspects and criminals outright following public outrage over the deaths of teens Kian delos Santos and Carl Arnaiz.