(AUGUST 13, 2019) – Philippine National Police chief General Oscar Albayalde admitted that he receives gifts during police events, although they are limited to food.
The statement came after Senator Ronald de la Rosa, Albayalde’s predecessor, also admitted to accepting gifts from grateful people.
“I’ll not be a hypocrite. Hindi ako ipokritong tao. Kumain din ako ng lechon,” Albayalde said in a press briefing during the 118th anniversary of the NCRPO at Camp Bagong Diwa in Taguig City.
“During anniversaries, we all accept food: mga pagkain, mga pa-lechon… but these things are consumable kasi,” he added.
The police chief also said there is nothing wrong with receiving gifts, so long as they are given out of gratitude and of insignificant value.
How much or how many is “insignificant” however cannot be gleaned from any law. Albayalde says it is up to the individual.
“This depends solely on the discretion and the sound judgement of the person. But kahit ito ay insignificant ang value, kung mayroon itong kapalit, then that is still a form of corruption,” Albayalde said.
All these stemmed from President Rodrigo Duterte’s remarks that policemen are free to accept gifts from grateful supporters.
Senator Panfilo Lacson and some critics maintain that public officials cannot receive gifts and that it would be in violation of the law.
“Mr. President, insatiable greed starts with simple, petty graft. It could be more addicting than drugs. There is no detox, nor is there rehab facility available for addiction to money,” Lacson said in a tweet. (Randell Ritumalta/JMF)