The birthday bash thrown for Metro Manila’s police chief.


Duterte defends police chief Sinas on Covid-19 birthday controversy


MANILA – Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has defended National Capital Region police chief Major General Debold Sinas following his controversial birthday celebration during the Covid-19 quarantine.

“I don’t want him transferred. He is a good officer, he’s an honest one. It’s not his fault if someone serenades him on his birthday,” Duterte said in Filipino in an address on Tuesday (May 19).

Sinas had come under fire over a gathering during his birthday amid the Covid-19 quarantine.

The National Capital Region Police Office even shared photos on Facebook of the birthday bash.

The photos quickly went viral and drew widespread criticism for law enforcers violating quarantine rules and social distancing measures.

Sinas has apologized for the incident but claimed that the photos were edited. The NCR Police Office also removed the Facebook posts containing photos of his birthday bash.

Meanwhile, the Philippine National Police has filed a criminal complaint against Sinas and 18 others, but PNP Police General Archie Gamboa said Sinas would not be relieved from duty.

Duterte also said Sinas will not be removed from his post despite the controversy. “He stays there,” he said, adding that he needed Sinas in his work.

“It is his time to be there. I do not believe in just firing him just because [people sang him a] happy birthday,” Duterte said. DAJ/Expat Media

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