SPOI Ed Covarrubias is 2013Metrobank C.O.P.S. of the Year Print
Saturday, 22 February 2014 00:00

Amidst the crimes happening in our city, there’s an inspirational police news that happened last 2013. Two local policemen from Zamboanga City were named as Metrobank’s Country’s Outstanding Police Officers in Service (C.O.P.S.) of 2013.  They are Police Senior Inspector Arlan Lim Delumpines in the commissioned officers category and Senior Police Officer 1 Eduardo De Guzman Covarrubias in the non-commissioned officers category. Every year, four Commissioned Officers, and six Non-Commissioned Officers are recognized with this prestigious award.

A joint undertaking of Metrobank Foundation with the Rotary Club of New Manila East and in close coordination with the PNP National Headquarter, the award honors exemplary 10 members of the PNP (Philippine National Police) who actively engage the community both in crime prevention and solution. For more than a decade, the Search for Cops honors model of professionalism, competence, and integrity of the members of the PNP. The award seeks to identify gallant men and women in the police force who are able to work with the community to prevent and solve crime.

What makes this search different from other competition is its emphasis on Community Policing. The organizers of the competition strongly believe that maintaining peace and order is a shared responsibility between the police and the community they serve. This means that the police should know the members of the community and have earned their respect in order to seek their assistance in identifying possible suspects to a crime, while at the same time, the community is impassioned enough to take an active role in assisting and working with the police force in order to ensure the peace.

I will be featuring today major achievements of Senior Police Officer 1 Eduardo de Guzman Covarrubias of the Anti-Vice Operative/Team Leader/Documenter of the Zamboanga City Police Office. A graduate of Southern City Colleges with the degree of BS Customs Adminstration, SPOI Covarrubias has been in the police service for 15 years.

In 2004 in a mission to catch a wanted criminal at Tulungatung, SPOI Covarrubias was hit in the stomach when he pushed and saved a colleague when the suspect fired his gun. For what is known in the annals of the ZCPO as the Jay Palarca Shootout, Covarrubias was awarded the Medalyang Sugatang Magiting.   Peace and normalcy returned to Tulungatung with Palarca’s demise.  It boosted local police image and credibility for citizen protection, even at the high price Covarrubias paid. Palarca was a “heavy”, wanted for homicide, a gunhand involved in a number of shooting incidents, and a protector of illegal drug dealers.

In 2012, SPOI Covarrubias was the Team Leader, Community Liaison, and Information Planner and Processor of the Crime Buster Task Group the Zamboanga City Police Office set up at Talon-Talon, Mampang, and Arena Blanco. His group was able to neutralize a crime group under notorious crime boss Jay Isnani. The cooperation of the 3 barangays  in providing vital information to the police force has sent a clear message that crime would not be allowed to flourish with impunity.

In 2012, SPOI Covarrubias, posed as student in school parking lots to solve increasing carnapping incidents in Zamboanga City. His spying led the anti-carnapping unit of our police force in collaring nine members of the syndicate that solved 15 carnapping cases in one swoop.

In 2010, SPOI Covarrubias helped in catching the city’s most wanted criminal Bannisar Amping,  It sent a clear message to the community and persons with warrants for their arrest that the police meant business when it came to wanted felons. Barangay officials and some brave townsfolk cooperation in giving the bits and pieces of information led to Amping’s fall.

In 2013, SPOI Covarrubias led an anti-vice team of the Zamboanga City Police Office and swooped down on dens pointed out by citizen-partners where operators thought they were far from prying eyes.  The raids brought in five gambling operators and an array of slot machines even in the face of pressure from some personalities and authorities.     The raids ended the stream of complaints from parents whose children had fallen prey to the lure of the slot machines.  Citizens and parents themselves joined the police teams to point out illegal gambling locations and operators – this is a real police-community partnership in action and in its truest sense.

In 2011, SPO1 Covarrubias, through his own initiative and with the help of family members, launched a special scholarship program for poor school children at the Culianan Elementary School in Zamboanga City.  He is also an active advocate and implementer of the Community Immersion Program that works to increase police-community contact and interaction.  As an Asst. Group Leader and documenter, he takes every opportunity to build that reservoir of goodwill, trust, and confidence that serves both police and people working for a safe community.

Congratulations to SPOI Covarrubias and Capt. Delumpines! In the increasing crime rates around us, we need more police forces like them who work hard and will sacrifice their lives. We need police forces who are visible and active in serving our community above and beyond the call of duty.

By Dante Corteza

Joshua 1:9. “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”