Opinion > Guiangster
Police colonel is declared persona non grata?

Written by Ilocos Sentinel posted on Sunday, June 16th, 2013

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Remember Police Senior Supt. Marlou Chan who served as police provincial director in Ilocos Norte? He was the immediate predecessor of S/S Gerardo Ratuita, incumbent OIC P.D. in Ilocos Norte. By the way, we remember S/S Chan because he is now in big trouble in his own home province of Pangasinan, his new assigned workplace as P.D.
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This Monday, June 10, Pangasinan Gov. Amado Espino Jr. and the provincial board of that province had declared Colonel Chan as “persona non grata”. I could not help but imagine how bitter and harrowing experience for Colonel Chan to undergo such humiliation. If you were in his shoes, how would you react to the situation? Imagine being declared “unwelcome” or “unacceptable” right in your own backyard!
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I hope Chan’s critics and enemies would not further downgrade him into a mere “social outcast” in his own province. It would be too much if they turn him into a whipping boy. After all, PD Chan is a full-bloodied Panggalatot from San Quintin town of that province. During his two-year stint in Ilocos Norte, he usually spoke in mixed English, Tagalog and Iluko when interviewed in local TV-radio broadcast.
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Based on recent published news report datelined Dagupan City, the provincial board there passed a strongly-worded resolution tooting him as “persona non grata”. They wanted him to step down from his PNP post on the allegation that he demonstrated “partiality and bias” in handling poll-related issues during the last May 13 midyear elections in Pangasinan.
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Earlier, Governor Espino had petitioned the court for the issuance of a TRO (Temporary Restraining Order) in an effort to stop Chan’s appointment as new PD of Pangasinan. Gov. Espino knows what he is doing because he was a former police general before he joined politics. He served as police regional director in Ilocos Region in 1998. I remember him as the honored guest who awarded me with plaque of appreciation citing me as “Journalist of the Year” being president of the Ilocos Norte PNP Press Corps during a PNP Day celebration in San Fernando City, La Union.
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The board resolution to this effect was unanimously approved by the provincial legislators. It goes to show that Colonel Chan has no allies among the provincial officials, especially Governor Espino who is not in good speaking term with him. The board also lamented that Chan never paid a courtesy call on the Sanggunian Panglalawigan (SP) of Pangasinan to present his agenda on peace and order.
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Be that as it may, Colonel Chan could make a sharp contrast of his situation now compared to his stay as then tenant at Camp Juan, Laoag City, seat of the Ilocos Norte police provincial office. For over two years, local government officials led by Gov. Imee Marcos pampered him with all-out support. His tour of duty in Ilocos Norte was probably full with sweet memories. His environment was a friendly atmosphere. Whereas in his home province, he now struggles against the powers that be.
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On the other hand, the print media in Laoag City saw Chan’s some weak points. During his stint in Ilocos Norte, he apparently flopped in curbing the proliferation of illegal gambling called jueteng as well as gun-for-hire activities. He was aloof to the Laoag-based publishers, editors and writers who equally criticized him for his lapses and praised him for any job well done.
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Several months before his exit from the province, I saw him how he prayed hard when he attended an anticipated Saturday mass at St. William Cathedral in Laoag City. This guy must be a pious man, I told myself. With a bodyguard seated behind him, the religious PD Chan kneeled in front of me and my wife Nannette. He took a communion in the center aisle and kneeled most of the time during the mass.
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Now, that this former PD of Ilocos Norte is in hot water in his home province of Pangasinan, maybe, he needs a sympathy and prayer from fellow Christians hoping that he would overcome all odds if he is truly innocent of any false accusation hurled by his detractors. However, in case his guilt is strongly proven, then, the best move is to take a graceful exit to save his police career from total collapse. Sometimes, it pays to be humble and swallow your pride.#(JUN R. GUIANG)

 

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