On the PNP rejoining the war on drugs
It is a fact that President Rodrigo Roa Duterte’s administration is facing a lot of challenges not least of which is its centerpiece war against illegal drugs that is tainted with the blood of extrajudicial killings or EJKs.
While EJKs violate the basic democratic tenet of due process, the Duterte administration has not declared it as policy in the war on drugs. But the way it goes soft on those law enforcers accused of being involved with it sends the wrong signal to the police, leading some in the ranks to violate the rights of drug suspects.
That other countries like those in the European Union had become critical of the administration’s war against illegal drugs had resulted in President Duterte unleashing cuss word-laced tirades at every public speaking engagements.
Using the country’s sovereignty and the global community’s lack of appreciation and understanding of the country’s drug situation as basis for his arguments, the President is adamant on pursuing his war on drugs regardless of the death toll.
One must remember that many administrations have all but made negligible mention of their programs to deal with the drug menace and it’s only President Duterte who had made his war on drugs front and center of his administration.
But there are flaws in the war that sprouted along the way, and while it is being corrected by the administration, the President’s critics are unsatisfied with the corrective measures being implemented on the program.
I think what the opposition and the militant groups want from the President is to condemn and punish those who violate due process of law and not encourage the police to perform EJKs.
They see that the President is not holding the PNP accountable for these killings. It is hoped that the President would do so if only to reiterate that the rule of law prevails over vigilante killings.
While the President ordered the PNP to rejoin the fight against illegal drugs, the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) is still the lead agency even if it doesn’t have the numbers to wage that war on drugs.
I trust that with certain measures to keep the PNP in check like requiring them to wear body cameras during their operations will ensure that they will do their jobs according to the law.
Today as reported by mainstream media, there are numerous criminal drug-related activities, and with the PNP rejoining the war on drugs, we hope we see another decline in the crime rate. God save the Philippines.
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