THE 160,000-strong Philippine National Police yesterday mourned a police anti-narcotics agent who was shot dead by a notorious drug trafficker and hitman he was trying to arrest in Makati City on Wednesday night, the first Metro Manila policeman killed as a result of the ongoing crackdown against drug trafficking and abuse.
PNP chief Director General Ronald “Bato” M. dela Rosa and National Capital Region Police Office director Chief Superintendent Oscar D. Albayalde extended their deepest sympathies to the bereaved family of Senior Police Officer 4 Edmar B. Bumagat, a member of the NCRPO Regional Police Intelligence Operations Unit (RPIOU).
“We have lost a good cop in our war against drugs,” said Dela Rosa as he paid tribute to the ultimate sacrifice made by SPO4 Bumagat.
SPO4 Bumagat and other operatives of the NCRPO-RPIOU, led by Chief Inspector Jojit M. Jumawan, were trying to arrest Angelo Tampos, a known drug pusher and professional hitman, on the strength of a warrant for murder when he fought it out with the lawmen inside his residence at no. 8256 Constancia Street in Barangay Olimpia, Makati City, Wednesday evening.
Albayalde said the RPIOU operatives were entering the gate of the suspect when Tampos ran and tried to grab the firearm of Bumagat. During their scuffle, the suspect overpowered Bumagat and shot him in the head, killing the officer instantly.
Another member of the team, PO3 Aries Benico, retaliated and shot Tampos who died on the spot.
Albayalde said Tampos is known to be a ‘hitman’ and runner of one of the biggest drug dealers in Makati City, identified as Norman Manete, who is still being hunted. The NCRPO chief said Manete recently surrendered to the Makati City Police Station as a result of their Oplan: Tokhang but reportedly returned to his illicit ways since then.
“There is no substitute for life. No amount of assistance will compensate for the death of our policemen. But this is our duty and we will not stop. We will mourn but we will continue our anti-drug campaign,” Dela Rosa told SPO4 Bumagat’s wife and daughter.
Albayalde said they are deeply saddened by SPO4 Bumagat’s death.
“In our campaign against illegal drugs, we are also victims. These criminals are not afraid to kill to get even with the authorities. However, we are dedicated to do our duty and we will continuously intensify our campaign against crimes and illegal drugs so that others will live safely,” Albayalde said.
SPO4 Bumagat is survived by his wife Genaire Bumagat and only daughter Gen Sallie Mar. His body lies in state at Rizal Funeral Homes in Pasay City.
Colleagues of SPO4 Bumagat expressed their grief over the death of the officer whom they described as an ‘honest and dedicated cop.’ SPO4 Bumagat was assigned to the RPIOU last July 13 only.
Though new in the team, he expressed his commitment in the fight against illegal drugs as he has proved in his previous assignment as a Police Community Precinct commander in Bgy. San Perfecto, San Juan City.
His friends described him as ‘a doting father to his only daughter’ and an officer who always has a funny side.