Mayor Vicente Loot invites Espenido as police chief of Daanbantayan, received 'bible verses' response from Chief Insp.

Loot invites Espenido to be town police chief

He may be in President Rodrigo Duterte’s drugs list, but retired police general Vicente Loot, incumbent mayor of Daanbantayan town, is not afraid of Chief Insp. Jovie Espenido.

In fact, Loot invited Espenido to accept a position as police chief of Daanbantayan.

“I would be glad to work with him. It would be good if he will be assigned in Daanbantayan so he can help me. I know him as a person. He stands his ground. He is an upright man,” he said in a phone interview.

In Espenido’s former assignments as police chief, he was credited for the neutralization of Albuera, Leyte mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. and Ozamiz City Mayor Reynaldo Parojinog and several members of his family. Espinosa and the Parojinogs are in the President’s list of drug lords and protectors.

Espinosa was arrested and detained at the Baybay City Sub-Provincial Jail where he was gunned down during a raid by operatives of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group.

Mayor Parojinog and members of his family, including his daughter, Vice Mayor Nova Princess Parojinog, on the other hand, were subjects of a search warrant. Their houses were raided by the police, resulting to their deaths.

Loot on Monday said he sent a text message to Espenido, relaying to the latter his intent to have the controversial policeman in Daanbantayan as its police chief.

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The text message was sent last August 29, but until now Loot did not get any response from Espenido.

“Wala man siyay reply. Taas-taas ra ba to. (He did not reply. The text message I sent to him was long),” he said.

“Mo-text siya nako usahay, pero pulos man (bible) verses. (He would sometimes text me, but they are all bible verses),” he added.

During the National Heroes’ Day celebration last Aug. 28, President Duterte announced that Espenido would be reassigned to Iloilo City.

Five days later, Chief Supt. Cesar Hawthorne Binag, Western Visayas police director, announced that Espenido’s assignment to Iloilo City was cancelled and that the latter would remain with the northern Mindanao regional police.

Philippine National Police chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa later revealed that it was President Duterte who ordered the cancellation of the order transferring Espenido to Iloilo City.

Dela Rosa said people from Ozamiz were “demoralized” and were planning to hold a people power in order to keep Espenido in their place.

Loot, one of the police generals who were publicly identified as drug coddlers by President Duterte, said Espenido can help him clear his name.

“He knows how it feels to be persecuted. I don’t know how to defend myself because I don’t know what is the exact accusation against me. If given the opportunity to dig deeper, he (Espenido) will find out what really is the cause of the issue against me,” he said.

[Read full: CDN]

TWO days after he was named a drug protector by President Rodrigo Duterte, Daanbantayan Mayor Vicente Loot put up P50,000 as reward for a police officer who eliminates a drug pusher in his town.

There’s also a P10,000-reward for the arrest of a drug pusher. He said he is offering the bounty as part of his serious campaign to rid his town of illegal drugs. [Read: SunStar]

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