By Christopher Lloyd Caliwan
MANILA — The new headquarters of the Eastern Police District (EPD) will soon rise in San Juan City, Rep. Ronaldo Zamora said on Thursday.
In his speech at the 45th EPD anniversary in Pasig City, Zamora said the PHP200-million district headquarters will be built in front of the San Juan City Government Center, which is being constructed in Barangay San Jose near the City Hall.
Zamora said he will provide half of the budget for the project while the remaining PHP100-million will come from retired Philippine National Police (PNP) chief, Senator Panfilo Lacson.
“This is not just a promise. We already had a budget for that. I was a Congressman unbroken since 1978. This will be my last term,” the lawmaker said.
“Lahat yan ay para lang sa isang dahilan, para maglingkod hindi para sa kanila kundi para sa bayan at mga mamamayan ng buong Pilipinas(All of this is for the reason to serve, not for themselves, but the country and for the Filipino people),” he added.
The district’s anniversary also marked the last day of outgoing EPD director Brig. Gen. Nolasco Bathan.
Police Brig. Gen. Johnson Almazan will replace Bathan, who will be heading the Southern Police District.
“As a parting gift to you, Gen. (Nolasco) Bathan, I will give you a new district headquarters in San Juan. I will give the next district commander, the Eastern Police District, a permanent district headquarters. This is not just a parting gift, but also a legacy project,” Zamora told policemen in his keynote speech.
EPD personnel is temporarily holding office at their three-story district headquarters in Barangay Malinao, beside the Pasig City Hall. It has an annex building along Meralco Avenue in Barangay San Antonio, which is owned by the local government of Pasig.
“Pahiram lang ito (This facility was only lent to us),” Bathan told reporters.
The construction of a new police headquarters is seen to be finished by the middle of 2021, Zamora said.
“The DPWH (Department of Public Works and Highways) told us they can do that in one and a half years. We will ask the design from the EPD. I don’t want anything less than four stories,” he said.
The activity was highlighted by the awarding of certificates of recognition to the deserving EPD personnel and other awardees from the Courts and Prosecution Offices.
Bathan said he is honored to be with the EPD and can attest to its accomplishments as a testament to its commitment to fulfilling its mandate.
“These accomplishments would not have been a reality without the excellent, professional and disciplined efforts of all EPD personnel,” he said.
“We can achieve more. We will achieve more. Together, we will win the war against illegal drugs, we will triumph against criminality. We will live in an environment of peace and progress,” he added. (PNA)