THE Filipino people now see the strengthening of the capacity of the Philippine National Police (PNP)
to gather documents and secure witnesses in the conduct of its investigation.
This after the House of Representatives approved on second reading a bill restoring the
authority of the PNP-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) to issue subpoena ad
testificandum or subpoena duces tecum.
Approved was House Bill (HB) No. 4863 which seeks to amend Republic Act (RA) No. 6975,
otherwise known as the Department of the Interior and Local Government Act of 1990.
And we get this feeling, given the public outcry against the rising number of crimes being
committed by minors, that the public, including the academe, will support the proposed law.
It is certainly ironic that the PNP-CIDG, unlike other government agencies, does not possess
the power to issue administrative subpoenas, according to well-meaning observers.
Other agencies with subpoena powers include the Ombudsman, Department of Justice, the National
Bureau of Investigation, Bureau of Internal Revenue and the National Police Commission.
As the country’s premier law enforcement agency, the PNP, which is civilian in nature but
national in scope, plays a significant role in any fact-finding or investigation.
The PNP-CIDG is mandated to undertake the monitoring, investigation and prosecution of all
crimes involving economic sabotage and other crimes of such magnitude and extent.
Likewise, it is tasked to investigate all major cases involving violation of the Revised Penal
Code and to conduct operations against organized crime groups (OCGs) in the country.
Thus, the two-chamber Congress -- the Senate and the House of Representatives -- ought to
support President Duterte’s anti-crime campaign by speeding up the passage of HB No. 4863.
It’s a move in the right direction.