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Drug dealers back on the streets amid anti-drug ops suspension

by admin   |   Posted on Monday, February 27th, 2017

From Reuters

From Reuters

PHILIPPINES — Before January ended, President Rodrigo Duterte suspended all anti-illegal drugs operations of the Philippine National Police.

This, after the involvement of several police officers in the kidnapping and slaying of Korean businessman Jee Ick Joo inside the PNP Headquarters.

However, just a few weeks after the suspension of the PNP’s war on drugs, several drug dependents have returned to their operations.

Quezon City Police District Director Guillermo Eleazar said, based on their monitoring, drug pushers and users have gone back to the streets to sell and buy illegal drugs such as ‘shabu’.

“All the indications are there. Actually, reports from the villages. We received reports that drug use has really returned as well as the drug trade because they know that we are prevented now from engaging in planned police operations,” he said.

The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) said the most common illegal substance used by Filipino drug dependents is shabu or methamphetamine.

On the other hand, a drug user admitted that despite the impact of the Duterte administration’s anti-drug campaign on their operations, many of them are still able to do continue their illegal activities.

“There was (an impact) of course. There were killings, so we had to be extra careful. You have to move quietly. Be really careful,” he said.

Although the PNP anti-illegal drugs operations are suspended, the PDEA assures that the agency will intensify even more its operations against illegal drugs in coordination with the military.

According to PDEA Director General for Administration Jesus Fajardo, the current administration’s campaign against illegal drugs remains effective.

In fact, the cost of shabu in the past months has increased based on their investigation.

“Before, meth cost P3,500 per gram. But after the war on drugs it’s now P7,000 per gram. That means, this indicates that the drug supply is running dry,” said Asec. Fajardo.

“As for the demand reduction, like someone said, it is a holistic approach because if the supply dropped, we lessen the demand for drug users.”

The PDEA once again calls on the public, particularly barangay officials, to immediately report to the agency information related to any illegal drugs operations in their areas. — Leslie Longboen | UNTV News and Rescue

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Senators expect to hear salary, labor, sea dispute issues in Duterte 4th SONA

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Saturday, July 20th, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Ahead of President Rodrigo Duterte’s fourth State of the Nation Address (SONA) on July 22, some senators have already picked out certain topics that they want the Chief Executive to discuss in his speech.

According to Senator Sonny Angara, he expects the president to outline his plans not only for his remaining three years in office but for the next decade.

In particular, Angara said the 2020 national budget should lay down the framework for the 10-year development plan for the country.

“This should result in the next administration building on what the President has achieved and what he started during his term and not the perennial focus on going after its predecessors,” he said in a statement.

The lawmaker added he would also like to hear the president fulfilling his promise of raising the teachers’ salaries, as well as his plan on creating more jobs and livelihood opportunities for Filipino workers.

“We want to see the creation of more jobs and opportunities for the Filipino people so that they are able to improve their lives and no longer see the need to go abroad in order to make ends meet,” Angara said.

Meanwhile, Senator Joel Villanueva said he wants to hear during the president’s SONA the administration’s commitment to further protect and promote the interests of Filipino workers.

READ: Villanueva expects gov’t commitment to protect Filipino workers on Duterte SONA

Villanueva said he is particularly eager to find out the outcome of the Security of Tenure bill, popularly known as the “End Endo” bill, which seeks to put an end to the practice of illegal labor contracting.

“The bill adheres to the Constitution, which mandates the regulation of relations between workers and employers, recognizing the right of labor to its just share in the fruits of production and the right of enterprises to reasonable returns on investments, and to expansion and growth,” he said.

“Thus, the Security of Tenure bill manages to strike a balance between contrasting interests of labor and employers,” he added.

For Senator Aquilino ‘Koko’ Pimentel, he wants to hear about the president’s priority bills, as well as his view on the surge of illegal foreign workers in the country.

“His priorities for one year usually, and then priorities for the last second half of his term,” he said.

Aside from labor issues, Senator Risa Hontiveros also expects the president to tackle in his speech the issue on the West Philippine Sea and the country’s assertion of Philippine sovereignty in the disputed waters.

“Wish ko lang na sasabihin ni Presidente na sa wakas after 3 years ay i-champion na niya, itataguyod yung tagumpay natin vis a vis China sa West Philippine Sea,” she said.

Duterte has been facing criticisms over his stance on China’s continued trawling in the country’s exclusive economic zone.

He earlier stressed that his position on allowing Chinese fishermen access to Philippine waters was not a violation of the Philippine constitution. (with details from Nel Maribojoc)

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Gabriela Partylist questions PNP’s random inspection of protesters during SONA

by Aileen Cerrudo   |   Posted on Friday, July 19th, 2019

Gabriela Partylist questions the random inspection to be implemented by the Philippine National Police (PNP) on protesters during President Rodrigo Duterte’s State of the Nation Address (SONA).

The party-list said the said measure violates the constitutional right to privacy.

According to their statement, the random inspection might probably lead to harassment or arrest of protesters without a proper warrant.

“Such security overkill dangerously sets up a pretext for intimidation, harassment and even warrantless arrest of activists based on planted evidence,” they said in their statement.

An estimate of over 40,000 protesters will join the anti-Duterte administration rally on Monday (July 22).

The Philippine National Police (PNP) announced on Thursday (July 18) that they will ‘most likely’ conduct random inspections on protesters as part of their strict implementation of security measures.—AAC (with reports from Grace Casin)

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Filipinos want Duterte to tackle inflation, jobs, China in 4th SONA – Pulse Asia

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Friday, July 19th, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – Workers’ pay, inflation and jobs have topped the list of issues that Filipinos would like President Rodrigo Duterte to tackle during his fourth State of the Nation Address (SONA) on July 22, a survey conducted by Pulse Asia Research, Incorporated revealed Friday.

The survey, conducted from June 24 to 30, showed that 17.1 percent of the 1,200 respondents said they want to hear Duterte talk about workers’ salaries, while another 17.1 percent wanted him to discuss about plans in reducing the prices of basic commodities.

Meanwhile, 15.2 percent of the respondents said they would like to hear Duterte’s accomplishments and plans on generating more jobs or livelihood opportunities.

Other topics Filipinos want the president to mention in his speech on Monday are the issues surrounding the relations between the Philippines and China (9.2 percent), particularly the assertion of Philippine sovereignty in the West Philippine Sea (6.1 percent) and the country’s policy in relation to China (3.1 percent).

Some 7.8 percent of the respondents also want to hear about the government’s war on drugs during Duterte’s SONA, 5.9 percent wanted him to discuss about improving the agricultural sector while 2.6 percent said they want pension increase to be tackled.

For residents in Metro Manila, the top issues they want discussed in Duterte’s SONA are the Philippine-China ties (20.2 percent), employment (18.3 percent), workers’ pay (16.6 percent) and prices of goods (10.7 percent).

The rest of Luzon cited salaries, while Visayans and Mindanaons want the president to talk about inflation, the survey showed.

The study also revealed that 75 percent of Filipino adults were aware of Duterte’s previous SONAs. Majority awareness levels are recorded across geographic areas and socio-economic classes, the Pulse Asia said.

The pollster said it has 95 percent confidence level in the survey results with an error margin of +/-2.8 percent.

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