Boholano Police General Jonnel Estomo, who was once considered among the top contenders to become chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP), has been promoted to Lieutenant General.
Lt. General Estomo was one of four police officials who were promoted to higher ranks during the donning of ranks ceremony in Camp Crame, Quezon City on Friday.
Estomo, who is currently head of Area Police Command – Western Mindanao (APC-WM), was promoted together with Police Major General Ronald Lee, head of Directorate for Human Resource and Doctrine Development (DHRDD); Police Brigadier General Ramil Montilla, executive officer of Area Police Command – Eastern Mindanao (APC-EM); and Police Brigadier General Arnold Maralag, director of Headquarters Support Service.
PNP chief Police General Benjamin Acorda Jr., who led the ceremony, expressed his confidence in the newly-promoted officials urging them “to wear their stars with pride, carry them with humility, and serve with honor, integrity, and an unwavering pursuit of justice.”
Estomo who was born on November 25, 1958 here in Tagbilaran City but a native of Panglao is one of the distinguished graduates of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) “Tanglaw-Diwa” Class of 1992. He had been considered a serious contender for PNP Chief when then General Rodolfo Azurin Jr. retired from the service and Estomo was also designated PNP Deputy Chief for Operations back in February last year.
Before he was named chief of APC Western Command, Estomo headed the PNP’s Directorate for Plans (DPL).
He also became Director of Police Regional Office (PRO) 5 (Bicol), National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO), PRO-7 and the PNP Anti-Kidnapping Group.
After graduating from the PMA, Estomo became known as a combat officer in Mindanao and Luzon areas. He is also a seasoned operational and administrative officer and a well-decorated police official, getting service medals and other decorations for efficiency, merit and outstanding achievements as a member of the police force.
Estomo was the chief of the Pangasinan Criminal Investigation and Detection Team when it was named as the Best Provincial CIDT during the 56th founding anniversary of the PNP Criminal Investigation and Detection Group in 2009.
In 2011, he was adjudged as the Best Senior Police Commissioned Officer during the CIDG’s 57th founding anniversary.
Under him, the Cavite Police Provincial Office was adjudged as the Best Provincial Office during the 114th Police Service Anniversary in 2015.
He also received an award as the Best Senior Police Commissioned Officer for Administration during the 116th PNP Anniversary in 2017.
Estomo also became a Cavalier Awardee for Police Operations in 2018, chosen by a distinguished panel from the PMA Alumni Association, Inc. on that year.
A well-decorated officer, he has proven his worth as director of the PNP Anti-Kidnapping Group, the Police Regional Office 5 (PRO5) in Bicol region and later the NCRPO in Metro Manila.
As PNP-AKG director, Estomo has been cited for leading the unit’s successful effort to arrest kidnapping-for ransom activities in the country. Under him, the PNP-AKG became known for its successful fight versus organized kidnapping gangs specifically foreign syndicates and their Filipino cohorts who have gained notoriety for targeting POGO workers and casino players from Asia.
It was General Estomo as PNP-AKG director when the unit established itself as a leading force in the campaign against kidnapping-for-ransom gangs, arrested hundreds of wanted persons, neutralizing dozens of notorious kidnappers and getting their captives alive in risky rescue operations.
The PNP-AKG under Estomo effectively addressed kidnappings-for-ransom in the country amid
efforts by culprits to devise new methods and use technology to carry out their capers.
Under him, the PNP-AKG partnered with the AKG Advisory Group to formulate anti-kidnapping strategies and legislative measures to fight the menace using the ‘whole-of-government approach.’
He was also a main contributor to the selection of the PRO5 in Bicol region as the Best Police Regional Office during the 121st Police Service.
The Bicol police regional office was also recognized for its excellent Unit Performance Evaluation Rating (UPER) in January, February, August and October 2002,
The monthly UPER parameters include measuring the implementation of discipline, law and order; conduct of recruitment and selection process; ensuring personnel morale and welfare; human resource actions on placement and promotion; management of personnel and records; and personnel plans and policies.
As Metro Manila police director from August 2022 to February 2023, Estomo became known for launching his S.A.F.E. program which is short for a Metro Manila police force that must be Seen, Appreciated and Felt by the people thru their Extraordinary good deeds round-the-clock.
The strategic program was launched by Estomo to ensure the safety and protection of the Metro Manila community against criminal elements 24/7.
He made it clear that such formula will remain his guiding principle during the rest of his police service.
Under him, the NCRPO which is composed of the Manila, Quezon City, Northern, Southern and Eastern Police Districts, hurdled the many challenges and scored big in its campaign against illegal drugs, criminality, terrorism and corruption.
Under Estomo, the NCRPO accounted for billions of pesos worth of drugs, illegal firearms and other pieces of crime evidence and hauled to jail over 2,000 most wanted persons, dozens of them National Level MWPs or Regional and District Level MWPs.
He also led all NCRPO efforts to investigate and solve the murder of radioman Percy Lapid in Las Piñas City on October 3, 2022. The NCRPO, with the help of the PNP Criminal Investigation and Detection Group then headed by Brigadier Gen. Ronald O. Lee eventually got hold of a confessed gunman in the Lapid case.
General Estomo also played a huge part in the seizure of 575 kilograms of shabu worth nearly P4 billion in Baguio City.