Negros Oriental Gov. Roel Degamo said he will not allow politicians to influence the designation of a police provincial commander in the province.


He was reacting to reports that somebody had caused the early termination of Senior Supt. Mariano Natuel Jr., as officer in charge of the Negros Oriental Provincial Police Office, while Degamo was attending to the visit of Secretary Mar Roxas of the Department of Interior and Local Government, and visiting Iloilo as guest during the Independence Day celebration yesterday with President Benigno Aquino III.

He insisted on another list of names for him to choose from, while refusing to accept the designation of a new OIC provincial director.

News of the impending relief of Natuel was monitored on Facebook even without an implementing order from the Police Regional Office 7. A designation that came from the Philippine National Police in Camp Crame, signed by director Dominador Eslava Aquino Jr., of Personnel and Records Management, named Senior Supt. Dionardo Carlos as the new NOPPO OIC. He is supposed to assume his post Monday.

A fax message of the memorandum was received by the provincial command 9:25 a.m. Wednesday, while Roxas was in Negros Oriental to turn over a copy of Executive Order 183 creating the Negros Island Region.

The memo was addressed to the regional director of PRO-7 for implementation.

Natuel said that, as a good soldier, he obeys orders and is waiting for an implementing order from the PRO7.

He was designated NOPPO OIC one year and four months ago when Degamo could not choose from a list of superintendents submitted by PRO-7 whom he wanted to head the Negros Oriental PNP.

Natuel, who turns 53 today, said he is willing to be assigned back to Central Visayas, but will celebrate his birthday in Negros Oriental as promised to San Antonio de Padua, the patron saint of Sibulan town.

His accomplishments include an intensified campaign against illegal drugs, and the arrest of former cops allegedly involved in the prohibited substance.

From February 2014 to May 2015, about 391 anti-illegal drugs operations were conducted, 252 of which were buy-busts and 111 by virtue of search warrants. In these operations, 503 persons were arrested, 376 of them suspected pushers and 85 users.

About 1,704.82 grams of suspected shabu and 3,237.16 grams of suspected dried marijuana leaves, worth P20,297,019.70, were confiscated, and 585 cases filed in court, Natuel said.

Degamo said he is satisfied with the performance of Natuel and will be glad if he will be included in the new list of possible NOPPO directors.*JG