Ismael Aguon, who was sworn in as the new Director for the Bureau of Public Safety (BPS) on March 18, has said that he will be implementing some changes in the bureau.
Director Aguon has been put in charge of a consolidated bureau, consisting of drug enforcement, corrections, fire, patrols, and criminal investigations, with subsections such as criminal justice, human trafficking, and transnational crime. The Director says that he started an audit of the bureau before coming into office, and that he is planning on conducting an in-house assessment and examination of positions and qualifications of those occupying them.
Director Aguon says that right now, BPS is suffering from an absence of enforcement of standard operating procedures (SOP’s).
“[SOP’s] is the very quickest thing I’ll hammer down now; everything else will reveal itself, and we’ll address it when we get there,” said Director Aguon.
One of the things which he said the bureau will be mindful of is disseminating updated police reports to the public and media outlets, especially when requested.
“This is an every-day, every-hour, every-minute job, so the best thing is that I receive information and then react,” said Director Aguon.
Aguon previously served as head of the BPS under President Tommy Remengesau Jr., from 2013 to 2016, before the position passed to Julio Ringang. Aguon was sworn in as the Director of the Narcotics Enforcement Agency (NEA) in 2017, a position which he maintained until his swearing-in as BPS Director two weeks ago.
Recent changes made to the Ministry of Justice (MOJ) under President Whipps’ new administration include the creation of the Bureau of Immigration & Labor and the Bureau of Maritime Security and Fish & Wildlife Protection, in addition to the merging of various agencies and offices under the BPS. Attorney General (AG) Ernestine Rengiil, who was reappointed to the position of AG for another four years, has also currently assumed the responsibilities of the Minister of Justice, overseeing the bureaus and divisions under the MOJ.