MANILA — Authorities are acting promptly on the complaints of policemen — coursed through Special Assistant to the President (SAP) Secretary Christopher “Bong” Go — against excessive loan interest rates and extended number of installments set by multi-purpose cooperatives (MPCs).
In a statement Thursday, the Philippine National Police (PNP) said “as of this report, some MPCs have waived the penalties on the loans of some of the complainants. Some of the loan deductions will also be stopped starting July 2018 due to the intervention of the PNP through the Finance Service.”
PNP Directorial Staff chief Deputy Director General Archie Gamboa assured the complainants of prompt action and more responsible agency intervention to solve the problem.
“Nang dahil sa culture of loan sa kapulisan, marami ang nabaon sa utang, pero hindi hahayaan ng pamunuan ng PNP at ng pamahalaan niMayor Duterte ang kapakanan ng mga alagad ng batas (Because of the culture of loan among policemen, many are debt-ridden. However, the PNP leadership and the Duterte administration will not allow the welfare of the law enforcers to deteriorate,” Gamboa said.
Malacañang interceded through SAP Go, who sent his lawyer to accompany the complainants to the PNP headquarters to discuss their complaints.
Last week, PNP chief Director General Oscar Albayalde directed Gamboa to look into the matter. The latter then called for an emergency meeting, which was attended by the complainants and their lawyer, the representatives of concerned offices, including former PNP Finance Service (FS) Director Police Chief Supt. Lyndon G. Cubos, who is now the Acting Director of Personnel and Records Management, the office which oversees the morale and welfare of the policemen.
Succeeding meetings and conferences were called to determine what the PNP can do as an institution to help the complaining policemen.
The FS was tasked to consolidate the documents pertaining to the loans of the concerned PNP personnel, present the findings and recommend solutions.
The lending institutions were reported to have imposed exorbitant penalties on the principal and interest rates of their borrowers. The new Monthly Amortization (MA) and the Number of Remaining Installments (NRI) were increased without the knowledge and permission of their borrowers.
These increased MAs and NRIs were entered into the system of the FS, which led to excessive deductions for loan payments from the salaries of the complainants.
Some of the NRIs reached as high as 870 installments, which means the borrower will have to pay them in 72.5 years.
As an intervention, the FS has introduced adjustments to the system by limiting the NRI for not more than 60 months or five years for salary loans; and for vehicle or car loan for not more than 72 months deduction.
The Committee on Accreditation and Automatic Deduction (CAAD) also reviewed the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with the accredited MPCs.
There were policies drawn to act on the complaints such as the policy on the release of the Statement of Accounts (SOA) to the borrower not later than 48 hours from the time the request was received; and the compulsory annual SOA containing the remaining loan balance and records of payment, which will be sent to the borrowers’ latest known address.
The CAAD will meet again on Friday to finalize revisions on the criteria of accreditation, including the maximum interest rate the lending institutions may impose to their borrowers. Benjamin Pulta/PNA-northboundasia.com