Lim­ited ac­cess

PRO 11: Me­dia barred from get­ting po­lice spot reports

Sun.Star Davao - - TOP STORIES - By Juliet C. Re­vita

ME­DIA ac­cess to po­lice spot reports will be barred by the Po­lice Re­gional Of­fice (PRO 11), ac­cord­ing to a Philip­pine Na­tional Po­lice (PNP) head­quar­ters' di­rec­tive.

PRO 11 spokesper­son Po­lice Se­nior In­spec­tor (PSI) Cather­ine dela Rey said yes­ter­day that PRO 11 re­gional di­rec­tor Po­lice Chief Su­per­in­ten­dent Manuel Gaer­lan told her that they have re­ceived the PNP main of­fice's or­der that lim­its me­dia ac­cess to some po­lice doc­u­ments and said that they will com­ply and fol­low these guide­lines.

Un­like be­fore, me­dia could no longer have the copy of the spot reports of the oper­a­tions con­ducted by dif­fer­ent pro­vin­cial po­lice sta­tions, mu­nic­i­pal po­lice sta­tions, city po­lice sta­tions and po­lice sta­tions within their ju­ris­dic­tion so as not to pre­empt the on­go­ing in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

Dela Rey, how­ever, added that me­dia could still ob­tain copy of ini­tial

reports or po­lice blot­ters which are clas­si­fied doc­u­ments un­der the PNP Me­dia Re­la­tions Man­ual is­sued on Fe­bru­ary 18, 2014 but not the spot re­port.

By def­i­ni­tion, po­lice blot­ter refers to a record or log where all types of op­er­a­tional and un­der cover dis­patches shall be recorded con­tain­ing the 5 "W" and 1 "H"(who, what, where, when, why, and how) of an in­for­ma­tion.

For spot re­port, it is a doc­u­ment of im­me­di­ate ini­tial in­ves­tiga­tive or in­ci­dent re­port ad­dressed to higher head­quar­ters per­tain­ing to the com­mis­sion of the crime, oc­cur­rence of nat­u­ral or man-made dis­as­ter or un­usual in­ci­dents in­volv­ing loss of lives and dam­age of prop­er­ties.

She fur­ther as­sured the me­dia in Davao re­gion that they will re­lease press re­leases to keep them up­dated on what is hap­pen­ing in their of­fice and to also di­rect in­ter­view with the pub­lic in­for­ma­tion of­fi­cers of re­spec­tive po­lice sta­tions of any in­ci­dent in their ar­eas of re­spon­si­bil­ity (AOR) is al­low­able.

Ear­lier, PNP spokesper­son Su­per­in­ten­dent Dionardo Car­los said that po­lice sta­tions will not re­lease po­lice reports to the me­dia if the in­ves­ti­ga­tion is still on­go­ing other­wise al­lowed by the head of of­fice.

The Na­tional Union of Jour­nal­ists of the Philip­pines (NUJP) lam­basted the PNP's de­ci­sion to con­trol the me­dia's ac­cess to in­for­ma­tion in re­la­tion to their oper­a­tions which is a pub­lic doc­u­ment and urged po­lice com­man­ders not to obey the "il­le­gal or­der" for the sake of the prin­ci­ple of "trans­parency and ac­count­abil­ity".

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