“We are fixing our schedule to sit down. I am grateful and humbled by her gesture. More than that, it shows her sincerity and seriousness in tackling her new task,” he said.
Robredo accepted the offer to become the drug czar on Wednesday (November 6) after President Rodrigo Duterte designated her as co-chairperson of the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD) in a memorandum signed on October 31, days after Robredo stated in an interview that the administration’s drug war has been ineffective.—AAC (with reports from Nel Maribojoc)
According to Lacson, it is difficult to find a connection between Dela Rosa’s visa cancellation and the President’s threat to terminate the US-PH VFA.
The senator said a “visa is a conditional authorization given by a country to visiting foreigners which may be granted, cancelled, and even denied.”
“The VFA is a bilateral agreement between the Philippines and the US that went through some back and forth discussions prior to Senate ratification but not without intense plenary deliberation,” Lacson said in a text message.
Duterte, on Thursday (January 23), gave the US a month to reverse the visa cancellation of Dela Rosa.
“I am warning you, kapag hindi ninyo ginawa ang correction diyan (if you don’t issue a correction), I will terminate the Visiting Forces Agreement,” Duterte said during his speech in San Isidro, Leyte.—AAC
President Rodrigo Duterte slammed Vice President Leni Robredo for her anti-drug war failure remark and called her a “colossal blunder”.
“You know, for all of these years, she has done nothing. She is a colossal blunder,” Duterte said.
The chief executive also slammed the election results saying, “You know, I hate to say this, but how many voters are there in the Philippines? And you just do away with the 200,000 plus that she got as a majority over Marcos. It was really a mistake. With a slim margin and you talk big.”
Robredo, on Monday (January 6) released a report and recommendations on the government’s war on drugs. She also called the government’s drug war a “failure” which gained backlash from the Palace, lawmakers, and the President.
Based on her report, only 1% of illegal drugs were seized by authorities from 2016 to 2018. She also recommended that the chairmanship of ICAD be transferred from the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) to the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB).
The president said Robredo cannot lecture him since she has only been a co-chair of the Inter-agency Committee on Anti-illegal Drugs (ICAD) for 18 days.
“If ever she becomes president, gawin niya iyon (she should do it). Pero (but) she can’t lecture me what to do,” he said. “As a lawyer lecturing on me, well, she should revisit her record I suggest.”—AAC (with reports from Rosalie Coz)
Chairman of the Senate Committee on Basic Education, Arts and Culture Senator Sherwin ‘Win’ Gatchalian has called for stricter monitoring in schools after reports of students allegedly using illegal drug alternatives such as “magic mushroom”.
In a statement, Gatchalian said that it is alarming to hear reports about high school students using psychedelic mushrooms or ‘magic mushrooms’ commonly found in rural areas as a form of illegal drugs substitute.
Department of Education (Deped) Secretary Leonor Briones said that several high school students were hospitalized after using the said illegal drug substitute.
Gatchalian also said that this incident needs to be investigated further in order to come up with a solution for the safety of the students in the country.
“Marami rin tayong dapat malaman. Gaano na karami ang naiulat na ganitong uri ng insidente? Paano natuklasan ito ng mga mag-aaral? Saan ito laganap? At ano-ano ang naging mga epekto nito sa ating mag-aaral? (We also have a lot to be learned. How many similar incidents were reported? How did students discover it [magic mushrooms]? Where is it rampant? What are its effects on our students?), ” he said.—AAC
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