Amid 2-3 month extension as PNP chief: Bato vows to clean-up Bilibid

  • PNP chief said he will accept next assignment as head of BuCor
  • He vowed to clean up national penitentiary, make hardened drug lords accountable

MANILA, Philippines –Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa’s has announced his willingness to be the next head of the Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) despite President Rodrigo Duterte extending his term as the country’s top cop.

“Who am I to refuse the President, he is my boss ever since, he will be my boss forever,” the Philippine Daily Inquirer quoted him as saying.

Acknowledging the hodge-podge of problems he is expected to face as BuCor chief, Dela Rosa nonetheless vowed to make convicted drug lords who continue to do business even while imprisoned inside the National Bilibid Prisons (NBP) accountable.

“Hirap na hirap na ako isipin ‘yan [I’m already have a hard time thinking about it]. How can you arrest someone who is already arrested, pano mo ikulong ang taong nakakulong na, paano mo i-convict ang taong na-convict na [how do you imprison someone who’s already imprisoned], how do you convict someone who’s already convicted], so what’s next?” he said.

“Tulungan nyo ako sagutin yung problem na ‘yan para matigil na ‘yung drug problem [Help me find the answer to that problem so we can stop the drug problem],” Dela Rosa added.

The PNP chief’s statement came shortly before Duterte announced he was extending his term for 2-3 more months.

“I have the discretion to extend even beyond retirement age. Marami pa kasi akong gawin [I still have many things to do]. I want to do some things in Mindanao of utmost importance and I need to extend the tour of duty of Gen. Dela Rosa to something like two to three months,” he said. “Once the projects are in place or operational or functional, then he goes to the BuCor.”