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Free legal assistance for Baguio cops pushed

BAGUIO CITY May 08 – The City Council approved on first reading a proposed ordinance providing free legal assistance to commissioned and non-commissioned officers of the Baguio City Police office (BCPO).

The ordinance authored by Councilor Leandro B. Yangot, Jr. stated the local government shall assign any of its legal officers or lawyers contractually hired or on a job order basis, to attend to the cases of police officers.

The ordinance added that the chief administrative officer or its equivalent human resource officer shall forward to the City Legal Office the case file or case summary of the police officer who wishes to avail of the free legal assistance from the local government.

Further, the City Legal Officer shall then ascertain whether or not the cases referred falls within the coverage of case filed in relation to the performance of official duties, responsibilities and tasks of the said officer.

Under the provisions of the proposed ordinance, a legal officer or lawyer rendering actual free legal services as defined by the Supreme Court shall be entitled to an allowable deduction from his or her taxable income, the amount that could have been collected for the actual free services rendered for up to 10 percent of the gross income derived from the actual performance of the legal profession, whichever is lower.

Yangot claimed that a peaceful and orderly Baguio is the desire of every resident wherein one can safely stay in their homes or walk or jog safely in any part of the city at any time of the day.

The ordinance emphasized that the BCPO commissioned and non-commissioned men and women play a key role in ensuring that peace and order prevails in the entire city through their various operations.

However, he admitted that there are times where their effectivity or efficiency in performing their duties and responsibilities is allegedly hampered by the filing of cases, criminal, civil and administrative in nature, in connection with the performance of their official functions.

Yangot asserted to allow the police officers to effectively and efficiently perform their duties and responsibilities, and tasks without being unnecessarily disturbed by harassment cases, the proposed free legal assistance to law enforcers is proposed to allow the local policemen to concentrate on their police functions.

According to him, most of the cases filed against police officers are simply harassment cases which affect the concentration of the law enforcers on their assigned duties and responsibilities, thereby affecting the overall program of the BCPO in maintaining the city as a peaceful and orderly place to study, live, work and do business.

He said the overall performance of the BCPO in sustaining its peace and order campaign is laudable as shown by the significant reduction in crime rates in the city while the significant improvement in the crime solution efficiency of law enforcers and boosting the morale of the policemen to exert more effort in maintaining the gains of peace and order initiatives is imperative.

By Dexter A. See

 
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ADVISORY

STATE OF THE CITY ADDRESS 2017

STATEMENT IN REPLY TO THE PUBLISHED OPEN LETTER OF BCDA PRESIDENT and CEO ARNEL PACIANO D. CASANOVA

STATE OF THE CITY ADDRESS
2014

Speech Delivered by Mayor Mauricio G. Domogan during the Cordillera Month Closing Ceremony
July 26 SLU-BC

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