Lt General Archie Gamboa assumes top PNP post– implications

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Following the retirement of senior police officers, PNP OIC Gen.Archie Francisco Gamboa (in photo) has ordered a major revamp in the police force. Gamboa is widely touted successor of former PNP chief Gen. Oscar Albayalde who recently resigned amid the hot "Ninja Cops" controversy. (Photo chief Benjie Cuaresma/IAmigo/CNS)

A day or two after news broke out about an anomaly on the purchase of speed guns by the Philippine National Police (PNP), the palace announced the formal appointment of Lt. General Archie Gamboa as the Chief of the country’s police force. President Duterte’s decision ended months of speculation as to who among the four or five top generals would get the President’s nod. What prompted Duterte to decide on Gamboa when the good general is set to retire very soon, actually, this year, followed closely by his mistah and another choice for the post, General Cascolan?

Gossip. Yes, the chances of the other choices got smashed due to gossip about them.

Cascolan, who crafted the dreaded anti-drugs campaign of Mr. Duterte, was dragged into a controversy involving a daughter of a drug king and another, a queen now incarcerated in one of the top city jails in the metro. While there is so much untruth to this (yes, it is FAKE NEWS), several forces within the palace used this to justify Gamboa’s ascension.

With Gamboa’s appointment comes the end of Cascolan’s dreams of becoming a PNP chief because while Gamboa is set to retire this September, Cascolan’s retirement follows closely after, I think, in November 2020. With Cascolan out of the picture, PNP members are now looking at just two tough contenders to replace Gamboa by this year.

General Eleazar had just been promoted, all the more raising the possibility of him becoming Gamboa’s replacement. Eleazar is well loved by the public but not so much within the PNP organization. His highly publicized image is both good and bad. Good because it strengthens the PNP’s ties with the public. Bad because it affects his performance. Several PNP insiders say Eleazar favors to be interviewed more than lead police operations.

To be fair to Eleazar, he is not known to be a legal eagle like Gamboa or an operative like Cascolan. Eleazar spent his years at the back-end so to speak of PNP operations.

Other issues which affect Eleazar is his closeness with the previous administration and with former PNP chief Oscar Albayalde who now faces jailtime for his alleged complicity in the ninja cops controversy. This impression is now being addressed as we speak by his supporters within the organization who believes that Eleazar is the man much needed by the organization.

Another one, and which several political kibitzers are closely monitoring is that of General Vicente Danao Jr. Danao is one of the so-called “Davao cops” close to Duterte.

Several insiders say, if Danao is the one, then, surely, it means that the choice of President Duterte to replace him, would simply be his daughter, Mayor Sara Duterte. Mayor Sara is close to Danao.

Danao is a fine officer and a gentleman. He is a no-nonsense guy who wants things done. He is close to former PNP chief Albayalde, TESDA chief Rapena and now Senator Ronald Dela Rosa.

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