Robredo wants clear PH drug war baseline data by yearend
Robie de Guzman • November 14, 2019 • 74
MANILA, Philippines – Vice President Leni Robredo on Thursday asked agencies comprising the law enforcement cluster of the inter-agency committee on anti-illegal drugs (ICAD) to produce by year-end a clear set of data on the government’s campaign against illegal drugs.
Robredo, who now co-leads ICAD, said this topic was among the key points discussed in her meeting with ICAD’s law enforcement cluster on Thursday morning.
“Ang unang na-highlight is as of now, walang clear baselines, so iyon ‘yung pinagtatrabahuhan. Mayroon nang efforts to do that. Iyon ang unang agreement na tapusin na iyong baselines, until the end of the year,” the vice president told reporters in an interview after the meeting.
“’Yong aming target until the end of the year, mayroon nang linaw. I think DILG would need more time to finish the information system, pero ipi-present nila sa amin on Tuesday,” she further stated.
The baseline data she is talking about refers to the number of drug users and drug dependents at the start of the campaign in 2016, as well as of surrenderers, arrested individuals, and the users undergoing rehabilitation.
Robredo stressed that having a clear set of data is important in dealing with the country’s drug problem. It will also be used to gauge the campaign’s accomplishments.
She also noted that government agencies have different drug war numbers.
“May listahan iyong barangay, may listahan iyong ibang local government units, may listahan iyong PDEA, may listahan iyong PNP. So just to harmonize all the lists,” she said.
Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Undersecretary Ricojudge Echiverri agreed with Robredo, adding that the lists submitted by some local officials are also laced with politics.
“Hindi maiiwasan yung mga barangay, imbis na ang ibigay na listahan yung mga totoo ay nilagay nila sa listahan yung mga kalaban nila sa pulitika. So, ibii-vet pa yun ng PNP at PDEA,” he said.
Echiverri also revealed cases where some local officials provide erroneous information on drug war which does not help at all as a basis for crafting an anti-drug strategy.
“Kasi ngayon po kahit kasuhan namin sila, ano legal basis? Wala, so pag nalaman nilang walang basis eh di, wala na lang, gawin ulit,” he added.
Aside from having no centralized information system on the campaign, Robredo also identified some problems in the detention of drug users and dealers along with other detainees such as in the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP).
“Kahit sa BJMP, ‘yung mga detention prisoners, nahahalo ‘yung accused of drug use sa mga hindi accused of drug use, nagkakaroon ng hawaan,” she said.
To address this, Robredo recommended the creation of a technical working group (TWG) to tackle and draft proposed measures to help improve the government’s war on drugs.
“Hopefully, by early next week meron nang TWG na before the end of the year, ang target ko nga when I get invited to the House committee on dangerous drugs, ma-present na ‘yung hinihingi na tulong from Congress,” she said.
Next week, Robredo plans to meet with the DILG, Department of Health and the Dangerous Drugs Board to discuss more on their ongoing programs in line with the anti-illegal drug campaign. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Vincent Arboleda)
MANILA, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte has dared Vice President Leni Robredo to speak up and expose what she claimed as her discoveries in the government’s war on drugs during her short stay as co-chair of the Interagency Committee on Anti-Drugs (ICAD).
“You seem to be na may impormasyon ka, ilabas mo, (You seem to have information, then expose it),” the President said emphatically.
Duterte dismissed Robredo from her post exactly 18 days after he appointed her to the position because the latter’s recent actions and public statements displeased the President especially her communications with officials of the United States and the United Nations.
After her dismissal, Robredo warned to expose what she knows about the controversial anti-drug program.
“Sa mga susunod na araw magbibigay ako ng ulat sa bayan. Sasabihin ko ang aking natuklasan at ang aking mga rekomendasyon,” Robredo said at a press briefing the day after she was fired on November 25.
(In the coming days, I will give a report to the people. I will speak of what I have discovered as well as my recommendation.)
“Kung sa tingin nila matatapos ito dito, hindi nila ako kilala. Nagsisimula pa lamang ako,” she added.
(If they think it will end here, then they don’t know me. This is just the beginning.)
But the President was unfazed by this warning.
He made certain that Robredo was having communications with former Human Rights Watch Asia Head Phelim Kine whom the President considers as among the critics of the government being a prosecutor in the International Criminal Court (ICC).
“You talked to almost all people instead of talking to the law enforcement, instead of talking to the barangay captain, instead of talking to people handling the rehabilitation,” he said referring to Robredo.
“I should say, she made an asshole of herself,” the President stressed.
Kine vocally expressed his willingness to go to Manila to help the Vice President in her programs and suggested the arrest of President Duterte and his cohorts because of the alleged human rights violations in the government’s anti-drug campaign. — MNP (with details from Rosalie Coz)
MANILA, Philippines – Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) director general Aaron Aquino on Tuesday urged Vice President Leni Robredo to push through with her earlier pronouncement to reveal her findings about the government’s crackdown on narcotics during her brief stint as co-chairperson of the inter-agency committee on anti-illegal drugs (ICAD).
Aquino, who co-chaired ICAD with Robredo, believes the vice president’s revelations would help the government in improving the anti-drug campaign.
“I am personally encouraging VP Leni Robredo to make her revelations on what she claims as her ‘discoveries’ on the government’s drug war,” he said in a statement.
“I believe that whatever revelations she have would help us in improving and furthering the anti-illegal drug campaign,” he added.
Robredo on Monday said she would give a report about her discoveries on the drug war during her short tenure as ICAD co-chair.
She also vowed to remain determined to end the killings under the government’s war on drugs despite her termination as ICAD’s co-chairperson.
President Rodrigo Duterte earlier fired Robredo from her post, which according to Malacañang was in response to the opposition’s dare to remove her from post due to lack of trust.
The Palace also said Robredo is free to do as she pleases with her findings on the drug war.
MANILA, Philippines – Senator Panfilo Lacson believes that Vice President Leni Robredo should justify the need to reveal her findings during her short stint as the co-chairperson of the inter-agency committee on anti-illegal drugs (ICAD).
“Kung gagawin ganoon lalong lalala, ang wedge lalapad. It’s her call. Kailangan justify niya rin,” Lacson told reporters at the Senate on Monday when asked for comment on Robredo’s statement.
“But sa akin I don’t think it’s still necessary. What for? Dahil binigyan ka ng katungkulan na gagampanan mo, ngayong natanggal ka, isisiwalat mo ang mga natuklasan mo?” he added.
The senator said if the information will help improve the government’s campaign against illegal drugs, then Robredo should reveal it “by all means.”
“Depende sa anong isisiwalat niya. If it is to destroy or impede ang anti-illegal drugs campaign, huwag naman sana,” he said.
“Pero kung natuklasan niya para ma-enhance ang fight against illegal drugs, then by all means,” he added.
Lacson also said that if Robredo plans to divulge mistakes that would make some people criminally liable then she should have done it while she was still holding the post.
“Pero kung may nakita siyang pagkakamali that would point to several persons that could be held criminally liable, dapat noong nasa position siya,” he said.
The vice president earlier vowed to remain determined to end the killings under the government’s war on drugs despite her termination as ICAD’s co-chairperson.
She also promised to report to the public some information about the drug war and her recommendations.
Over the weekend, Malacañang confirmed that President Rodrigo Duterte has fired Robredo in response to the opposition’s dare to remove her from post due to lack of trust.
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