The Senate may find fault in the PNP, but it also finds funding for them. And the Senate helps the police when it does both.
Far from ingrates, the Senate has expressed its support to the PNP by not only approving, year in and year out, a higher budget for the PNP, but adds more to what it requests—such as this year, when it unilaterally and unanimously added P5.63 billion to its budget for new equipment.
As a result of the Senate augmentation, PNP was given P1.9 billion last August by the DBM for the purchase of vehicles, body vests, guns, boats, radios, and even dogs priced half-a-million pesos each.
In short, the Senate’s “Thank You” card to the policemen is in the form of appropriations with additional zeros. This is not, however, an act of grace by the Senate, but something we believe our policemen rightfully deserve.
The Senate may be resolute in probing extra judicial killings committed by some rogue cops, but what should not be forgotten is that it has also been tireless in providing extra funding for all policemen.
Take for example, the PNP budget for next year. It will go up, by at least P19.9 billion, to P131.5 billion from this year’s P111.6 billion. The increase will enable them to hire 10,000 policemen, construct 96 police stations, and acquire billions of pesos worth of equipment under the Capacity Enhancement Program of the PNP.
And there are proposals by some senators to raise it further, so it will be able to narrow down its shortage of 12,243 patrol cars, 11,352 motorcycles, 20,337 service handguns and 27,457 long firearms, 127 police fast boats, and 1,082 special purpose vehicles.
Also being studied is a new pay scale for policemen that will incorporate their current provisional allowances into their base pay.
So when the Senate calls out the PNP for the excesses committed by its members, then it is only doing its duty to ensure that not only laws are followed by the protectors of the people, but that they are spending the taxpayer’s money properly.