Ochave is new CPPO officer-in-charge

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FOR the second time this year, the Cebu Police Provincial Office (CPPO) has a new chief.

Col. Rommel Javier Ochave formally assumed the post of officer-in-charge (OIC) of the Cebu Police Provincial Office (CPPO) on Monday, Sept. 5, 2022.

Ochave replaced Col. Elmer Lim, who was reassigned to the Police Regional Office 7. Lim was designated OIC following the relief of then CPPO director Col. Engelbert Soriano in June.

Ochave’s appointment was signed by Brig. Gen. Robert Rodriguez of the Directorate for Personnel and Records Management in Camp Crame on Aug. 31, 2022.

Ochave paid a courtesy call on Governor Gwendolyn Garcia at the Capitol on Monday.

He told the governor that the CPPO will raise police visibility in the province, especially in popular tourist destinations to ensure the safety of travelers.

He said he had already ordered all police stations in the towns and component cities to coordinate with local chief executives to maintain peace and order.

He also assured the governor that he will support the Provincial Government’s programs.

“It is an honor to be designated as the new head of the Cebu PPO and serving the people of Cebu Province in partnership with our energetic provincial governor and other local government units in keeping a safe, secured and peaceful Cebu Province,” Ochave said.

Ochave is a member of the Philippine National Police (PNP) Academy Kaagapay Class of 1996.

He is not new to Cebu as he used to be assigned to the Highway Patrol Group 7 and the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group 7.

The relief of Soriano as CPPO director in June sparked a controversy since it came two days after he publicly supported Garcia’s Executive Order (EO) 16, which made the wearing of masks in open and well-ventilated areas optional.

The EO was in contrast to Interior Secretary Eduardo Año’s order to police personnel to continue implementing minimum public health protocols, which include the mandatory wearing of face masks in all public places.

The PNP spokesperson, though, said Soriano’s relief was “coincidental” and that it was for his “career advancement.” (PJB)