By Ayan C. Mellejor and Lovely A. Carillo
Davao City Police Office (DCPO) former director, Chief Superintendent Ronald Dela Rosa was relieved as Brigade Commander of the Philippine National Police (PNP) Reactionary Standby Support Force (RSSF) in Camp Crame.
The PNP’s move on dela Rosa came after his recent posts in the social media favoring presidential candidate Mayor Rodrigo Duterte. One of his posts was a birthday greeting to the mayor, whom Dela Rosa regarded as his greatest influence in his career and greatest leader. His relief order was effective Tuesday (May 3) six days before the conduct of the presidential elections on Sunday.
Last month, dela Rosa wrote on his Facebook account: “You have been the greatest influence in my career. I never feared to enforce the law and prevent crimes because you are always there watching my back…..To the greatest leader on earth, Mayor RRD, happy birthday sir! Wishing you the best of health and the best of 2016! May God bless you more!”
Last Sunday, April 30, dela Rosa posted this status on his Facebook account: “I am the Brigade Commander of the PNP RSSF (Reactionary Standby Support Force) composed of 8 battalions close to 5,000 personnel based in Camp Crame. Kayong mga mangdadaya at mangliligalig ngayong May 9 elections, humanda na kayo! WE WILL CRUSH YOU!!! Kung sa binisaya pa LIGSAN TA MO!!!”
From RSSF chief, Dela Rosa, better known among Davaoeños and the police ranks as “Bato”, is now assigned as executive officer of Human Resource and Doctrine Development (HRDD) which takes charge of training activities for police officers.
Dela Rosa was recently promoted to chief superintendent (general). Based on published reports Dela Rosa is replaced by Chief Superintendent Francis Elmo Sarona to head the RSSF which is composed of eight battalions close to 5,000 personnel based in Camp Crame.
Before he moved to Camp Crame, Dela Rosa served Davao region as provincial director in Compostela Valley, Davao del Sur and the city chief of police of Davao.
As city chief of police Dela Rosa has been spearheading anti-crime campaigns including illegal drugs. Among his successful campaigns are the “Oplan TokHang”, “Taphang (Tapok Hangyo) and the “Habal-Habal Cops Kontra riding in tandem”.
It was not known if his relief has something to do with his posts on Facebook. But in a report of Bombo Radyo Philippines, the PNP leadership denied that the relief of Dela Rosa has something to do with the police officer’s FB posts.
Quoting Police Deputy Director General Danilo Constantino, the Bombo report said the PNP hierarchy is assigning Dela Rosa to conduct training and orientation for PNP personnel in the national headquarters on their election duties.
But Constantino was also quoted saying they would also look into administrative liabilities of Dela Rosa over his posts on social media. He reminded that personnel of the PNP should stay apolitical.
Dela Rosa confirmed to Mirror he was relieved but declined to comment.
Dela Rosa, a graduate of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) class ’86, was among those identified by the PNP’s Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) as Board of Inquiry members tasked to conduct an investigation on the Mamasapano Clash.
He was one of the 38 police officers awarded by President Benigno Aquino during the Araw ng Parangal Sa Kapulisan for the arrest of Malaysian terrorist Mohd Noor Fikrie Binabd Hahar and his wife Annabel Nieva Lee in Davao City.
Dela Rosa has become a celebrity of sorts in Davao for his many conquests and accomplishments.
Dabawenyos call him “The Rock” or sometimes, “Vin Diesel” but most often, he is simply called “Bato” not only because of his obviously hard muscles but because he grew up in Barangay Bato in Sta. Cruz, Davao del Sur.
He was responsible for reducing by almost 60 percent the circulation of illegal drugs in the city since he took over DCPO, because of his Oplan Tukhang (Tuktok-Hangyo). Another successful strategy which he is proud of is Oplan Pakgang (Pitulon ang Kabatan-onan sa Gang) or Disciplining Youths in Gangs.