Robredo is ‘being set up to fail,’ Lagman warns

By: Pathricia Ann Roxas - Inquirer.net November 05,2019 - 06:20 PM

MANILA, Philippines —Vice President Leni Robredo “is being set up to fail” with her appointment as co-chairperson of the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD), opposition lawmaker and Albay 1st District Rep. Edcel Lagman warned Tuesday.

In an October 31 memorandum, President Rodrigo Duterte designated Robredo as co-chair of ICAD “to lead the government’s efforts against illegal drugs until 30 June 2022, unless sooner revoked.”

READ: Duterte appoints Robredo co-chair of gov’t committee vs illegal drugs

Lagman called the position a “diluted” one and “vastly different” from the anti-drug czar that was previously “offered” by the President. Duterte made such an offer after Robredo said there was a need to reassess the administration’s bloody drug war amid the campaign’s failure to reduce the number of drug users in the country.

“The diluted position validates the fear that the Vice President is being set up to fail,” the congressman, a Liberal Party member, said in a statement.

“No less than Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) Chief Aaron Aquino, the Chair of ICAD, ominously predicted that Robredo would fail,” he added.

READ: PDEA chief thinks Robredo ‘will fail’ as drug czar

Lagman also warned that as co-chair of ICAD, the Vice President would have to contend with the chair and the multiple members of the body before she could act.

“The Vice President is being thrown into a composite of an inter-agency committee with no less than 20 agencies as members pursuant to Executive Order No. 15 which created the ICAD on March 6, 2017,” the lawmaker said.

Makabayan lawmaker and ACT Teachers Rep. France Castro also advised Robredo against accepting the position.

“Kumukuha lang ng damay si Pres. Duterte sa failure ng kanyang gyera laban sa droga,” Castro said.

(President Duterte is just entrapping Robredo in the failure of his war against drugs.)

Meanwhile, Ako Bicol Rep. Alfredo Garbin Jr., a member of the House majority, said they believe Robredo would be able to contribute significantly to the administration’s campaign against illegal drugs.

“It may well serve as the bridge which would allow both parties to work together towards a common goal of eradicating, not only the menace of drug addiction, but such other problems confronted by our country,” he added. /kga

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