MANILA, Philippines – Knowing that 32 people are killed everyday by the police in their anti-drug operations doesn’t bother President Rodrigo Duterte.
In fact, it’s okay with the chief executive if authorities eliminate tens of Filipinos daily if this is the way to solve the country’s narcotics problem, just like what authorities did in Bulacan province from Monday night until Tuesday afternoon.
“‘Yong namatay daw kanina sa Bulacan, 32, in a massive raid. Maganda ‘yon. Makapatay lang tayo ng mga another 32 everyday then maybe we can reduce…what ails this country,” Duterte said on Wednesday, August 16, in his speech in Malacañang during the celebration of the 19th anniversary of the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption.
“Well, of course, we are all bleeding hearts here because most of you are really victims of crime and criminality and extreme negligence,” he added.
100,000 drug suspects to be killed, thrown into Manila Bay
What the President said about killing many Filipinos being linked to drugs isn’t new anymore.
In May 2015, the then Davao City mayor said that if God would allow him to become the highest leader of the land, he would have 100,000 drug suspects killed and thrown into the Manila Bay.
“‘Pag by chance that God will place me there, magbantay kayo, kay ang 1,000 na ito maging 100,000. D’yan mo makita tataba ‘yong isda d’yan sa Manila Bay, d’yan ko kayo itapon.”
[If by chance that God will place me there, watch out because the 1,000 (people executed) would become 100,000. You will see the fish in Manila Bay getting fat. That is where I would dump you.]
In July last year, Duterte gave assurance to policemen that he would defend them if they kill 1,000 people in the line of duty.
“Do your duty, and if in the process you kill one thousand persons because you were doing your duty, I will protect you. And if they try to impeach me, I will hurry the process and we will go out of the service together,” the President said.
“Do not bulls**t me…Do your duty, I will die for you,” he further told them.
Promise to end drug problem in 3 to 6 months isn’t realistic
On Wednesday, Duterte recalled that while he was campaigning in February last year, he promised to stop criminality in the country within three to six months if elected president and would resign from office if he fails to do so.
But he said he realized that his self-imposed deadline to end the country’s narcotics problem was not realistic as he was just speaking then as a mayor based on his experience in Davao.
“Inuna ko ‘yong droga. Sabi ko that I will stop drugs. Well, the problem itself, in about three to six months. And I was talking with a background of what my experience was when I was the mayor of Davao City.”
“And when I said that I could solve it, I was referring to an environment na ako ‘yong mayor na parang Davao itong Pilipinas.”
He admitted though that in the city where he ruled for over two decades, the drug problem persists but at least residents act properly.
“Sa awa ng Diyos, sa Davao, still not perfect but ‘yong droga pati ‘yong…everybody behaves. And because it is not that I directed them to behave while I impose rules…,” Duterte said.
Also, Duterte said that while he was a mayor gunning for a presidential post, he never thought that the Bureau of Customs that was supposed to block illegal shipments of illegal drugs was the one that paved the way for the entry of narcotics imports into the country.
“And little did I realize that the very agency I was relying on to protect us from the smuggling of drugs from abroad, ‘yon pala ang nag-i-import rin ng drugs.”
“So how can I finish it?…Hindi ko matatapos ‘to. Then I realized, ‘yong Amerika…, with all its power…hindi kaya [I won’t be able to finish this. Then I realized that even America, with all its power, also could not finish it],” he added.
The President lashed at those who are questioning his credibility because of his failed promise to immediately solve the country’s problem on illegal drugs.
“‘Yong mga gunggong diyan na sinasabi na hindi kaya. Sabi, ‘Hindi pala niya kaya.’ Kung kayo ilagay dito sa lugar ko? Eh ako mismo ang nag-uutos ng patayan, hindi ko nga kaya, kayo pang mga…”
[Those stupid there who say that I can’t finish it. What if you’d be the one in my place? What can we expect from you if even I who order the killings can’t finish it.]
“Huwag na tayong mag-drama dito [Let’s not a make drama out of this here]. You will be far worse than what you have now,” Duterte further told his critics.
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