CAMP GEN. ALEJO SANTOS, Bulacan — Ten drug suspects were killed while 136 others were arrested during simultaneous police operations in 23 towns and cities in Bulacan province.
Senior Supt. Romeo Caramat Jr., acting Bulacan police director, said the operations were launched on Thursday, adding that the fatalities fired at police officers triggering gun battles.
Three of the suspects died during police operations in the City of Malolos, while two died in Norzagaray. The rest of the fatalities were killed in drug busts in the towns of Bocaue, Calumpit, Hagonoy, Pandi and Plaridel.
The police mounted sting operations against suspected drug peddlers, or served warrants and seized 112 grams of shabu (methamphetamine hydrochloride) and 66 grams of marijuana.
The killings happened amidst the announcement of Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa that the police highly value the lives of people amid the latest Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey that said nine out of 10, or 90 percent of the Filipinos want drug suspects to be arrested alive.
“Sa kanila (for them) 90 percent? Sa amin 100 percent. Mas gusto naming mahuling buhay,” he said in an interview with GMA News TV on Friday.
“What’s the use of waging this war on drugs if you don’t value life?” he said.
The SWS results were released following a series of surveys related to the drug war.
An earlier SWS survey shows that 63 percent of Filipinos believe that drug suspects were killed even after they surrendered themselves to authorities.
PNP spokesperson Chief Superintendent Dionardo Carlos said that in their 71,393 drug operations conducted from July 1, 2016 to September 30,
2017, about 109,090 drug offenders are alive and are now facing criminal charges.
“Similary, Oplan Tokhang held 8,794,120 house visitations nationwide that resulted to 1,260,196 drug personalities who voluntarily surrendered to the authorities and was accorded the opportunity to change and assistance be extended to them,” he said.
The PNP spokesperson said this only goes to show that they value the right to life of drug suspects.