By: Glazyl Y. Masculino
BACOLOD City – Life is very precious.
This was the reaction of Police Lieutenant Colonel Jovie Espenido, newly assigned deputy city director for operations of Bacolod City Police Office (BCPO), following speculations for a “bloody Bacolod” with his anticipated arrival in the city.
“Siguro iyon yung expectations nila kasi nakita nila sa trabaho ko. Pero to give you an idea, hindi siguro na ganun,” Espenido said.
Public speculation and assumption on the so-called “bloody Bacolod” came out following confirmation of Espenido’s assignment here.
The controversial police official received positive reactions from netizens on social media regarding his Bacolod assignment as he is known to be aggressive in the campaign against illegal drugs in his previous assignments.
But some netizens were also somehow uncertain for a possible “bloody” drug war here.
Espenido arrived here around 4 p.m. Wednesday after a courtesy call to Police Brigadier General Rene Pamuspusan, director of Police Regional Office (PRO)-6 in Iloilo City last Wednesday.
He met some members of the local media in a press briefing at the BCPO headquarters around 7 p.m.
Espenido said he is not expecting a “bloody” stint here, adding that he was assigned to handle the planning and managerial tasks at the headquarters.
“I will just obey the orders and continue to be aggressive against illegal drugs,” he said, although he said he will be more hands on in dealing with paper works with his current designation.
He, however, urged drug users and drug pushers to surrender and stop their involvement in drugs.
“Huwag hintayin na hulihin or may mangyari sayo na mamatay ka,” he said, as he stressed the importance of life.
Espenido was then the chief of police of Albuera, Leyte, when former Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr., who was jailed for illegal drugs use, was killed in his custodial facility during the police’s implementation of a search warrant in 2016.
He was transferred to Ozamiz City the following year, where he allegedly led the “neutralization” of the Parojinog drug group.”
But he said that he’s not expecting the same thing to happen here, as he claimed to be 100 percent pro-life.
“Si Lord lang ang may alam. Hintayin niyo lang. Kung sakali meron, lulutang, maririnig at makikita niyo rin yang “bloody bloody” na yan. Hindi yan matatago,” he said.
“Ang sa akin naman, dependent ako sa Panginoon. I’m not perfect. Pero kung hindi ako maging dependent sa Panginoon, baka madisgrasya tayo and ma-mislead yung aim ng government. Siguro hintayin nalang kung ano ang trabaho,” he said.
He hopes that he can give the expectations of the people.
Meanwhile, Espenido said that he has yet to assess the drug situation here since he is new.
“I will observe and personally validate information to confirm the involvement of drug personalities here,” he said, adding that he just learned these past days that the recovered illegal drugs from anti-illegal drug operations in Iloilo were reportedly sourced out in Bacolod.
“Mas challenging ito dahil kung galing pala lahat dito, mapagpaplanuhan iyong operations against illegal drugs para mahanap kung sino ang may hawak ng drugs para matapos na,” he said.
He also said that he does not have a list of big personalities linked to illegal drugs here.