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Bato backs naming politicians with drug links in brgy polls

By: Ador Vincent S. Mayol April 05,2018 - 11:14 PM

PNP Director General Ronald dela Rosa tries the Kel-Tecs KSG 2, a 12- gauge with a magazine capacity 25+1, during the 26th AFAD Defense and Sporting Arms Show-Cebu at SM City Cebu on April 5, 2018..

REJECT the candidates for the barangay election who have links to illegal drugs.

This was the advice of outgoing Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa to the electorate barely a month before the barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections.

The country’s top police official believed the people themselves knew who among their respective village officials are into the illegal drugs trade and should not hesitate from naming them and rejecting them in the polls.

“Please do not vote for this kind of persons so that the drug problem in our country will minimize,” said Dela Rosa in Cebuano during a press conference at the launching of the 26th Defense and Sporting Arms Show at SM City Cebu on Thursday morning.

“What will happen to our war on drugs if these officials will remain in power just because they have lots of money?” he added.

Dela Rosa, however, has no definite answer when asked if the PNP would be willing to reveal outright the names of the barangay officials who are linked to illegal drugs.

“All we could do is to proclaim the good and the bad news, but we could not stop them from seeking reelection. The PNP has the list of incumbent barangay captains and councilmen who are into the drugs trade. (But) I believe the people know who among their officials are involved in the illegal drug trade,” he said.

Association of Barangay Councils (ABC) Cebu City President Philip Zafra said they would welcome any move to publicly reveal the names of those involved in the illicit trade.

“But it should not only be barangay officials (that should be named) but all elected government officials and those in law enforcement agencies (who are into illegal drugs),” he said in an interview yesterday.

Zafra said it should not also stop by just naming names: “It is better if they (PNP) also file charges against these officials.”

Meanwhile, Dela Rosa said the PNP would be willing to submit the necessary documents requested by the Supreme Court (SC) in relation to the government’s war on drugs but it has to be on a “case to case basis” only and that not all information would be given to the SC.

“We can’t divulge everything (to the Supreme Court) because we have projects that involved not just policemen but civilians as well,” he said.

Dela Rosa expressed fear that drug syndicates would get to learn about PNP’s confidential information and would take advantage of it.

“If drug syndicates will know about it, I pity those people who gave us the information just so that members of these syndicates will be arrested,” he said.

Dela Rosa said the PNP is leaving it up to the Solicitor General to take the necessary action to protect the interest of the PNP.

Last Tuesday, the High Court directed Solicitor General Jose Calida to make good on his promise to submit the PNP investigation reports on the killing of more than 4,000 drug suspects in the government’s relentless war on drugs.

Voting unanimously, the 12 justices denied Calida’s appeal to rescind their Dec. 5, 2017 order requiring the submission of the official PNP reports on the killings of drug suspects during the implementation of “Oplan Tokhang.”

The Center for International Law (Centerlaw), which represents the two groups of petitioners — families of slain drug suspects — filed a petition before the SC in 2017 and questioned the constitutionality of the government’s war on drugs.

Last December, the High Court directed the PNP to submit several documents in relation to its anti-drugs operations, including the lists of persons killed in legitimate police operations, and deaths under investigation from July 1, 2016 to November 30, 2017, names of Chinese and Filipino-Chinese drug lords who have been neutralized, comparative tables on index crimes, and statistics of internal cleansing within the police force.

Calida earlier told the High Court that the submission of drug war reports will compromise the government’s war on drugs. /WITH REPORTS FROM DORIS MAE MONDRAGON

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TAGS: backs, Bato, naming, politicians

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