February 28, 2024

True blue Baguio boy, Gen. Camilo Pancratius P. Cascolan, has been appointed by Malacañang as the new chief of the Philippine National Police following the retirement of erstwhile PNP chief Archie Gamboa last week.
His appointment came on the day Baguio is celebrating its 111th Charter Day anniversary.
The 55-year-old Cascolan, a member of the Philippine Military Academy Class 1986, will lead the 209,000-strong police force nationwide until his mandatory retirement on Nov. 10 unless the President extends his term.
At Camp Crame, the PNP Officer Corps and rank-in-file at the general headquarters welcomed Cascolan’s appointment, saying the police officer from Baguio is capable of leading the police force.
“Gen. Cascolan brings with him the occupational specialty in command and control, honed by his vast experience in field operations and strategic management,” reads the statement from Camp Crame.
“The PNP Officer Corps and rank-and-file personnel welcome his designation as chief PNP to ensure continuity of command in the supervision of all administrative and operational execution of the PNP mission as the weight of responsibility of the PNP increase due to the pandemic and the threat of terrorism,” the statement added.
Cascolan’s way to the top has been a long-time coming after he was promoted to two-star rank in 2017. That time, he was perceived as a potential candidate for chief PNP after he was assigned director of the National Capital Regional Police Office. But his stint as NCRPO chief was short-lived after he was replaced by Lt/Gen. Guillermo Eleazar.
Cascolan is one of the 2015 Country’s Outstanding Police Officers awardees, a recognition conferred by Metrobank Foundation in partnership with the PNP.
He finished his elementary at the Maryknoll Convent School and his secondary education at the University of the Philippines Baguio High.
Planning to enter the seminary to fulfill his dream to become a priest, Cascolan has discovered another calling, which is to serve the country and the Filipino nation in the military and police service.
Cascolan is not known to many Cordillerans, as he was assigned to various military and police units in the south. After graduating from PMA, he was assigned to the Regional Special Action Force of the military in Parang, Maguindanao.
But he has displayed what a Cordilleran police officer is capable of, in terms of leadership and managerial skills both in the military and police service.
As a junior officer, he was assigned to the Reconnaissance Company and 324th Public Company of the Army in Iloilo from 1987 to 1990.
He decided to join the PNP in 1992 and was assigned to the Barotac Nuevo Police Station in Iloilo, where he spent his police service for close to a decade.
 He had held various positions in different police units and commands such as the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group, the Philippine Center on Transnational Crime, the PNP Aviation Security Group, and commander of the Taguig City Police Station.
He also served as deputy director in Police Regional Office-3 and PRO-11. – Harley F. Palangchao