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DRUG WAR: INT'L CONSORTIUM ASKS GLOBAL AUTHORITIES TO CONDEMN SURGE OF KILLINGS
[RELATED: Senator De Lima calls for end to killings]


AUGUST 2 -An apparent victim of summary execution is slumped on a pavement in Tondo, Manila. STAR/Joven Cagande, File  A network of more than 200 non-governmental organizations called on the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) to urgently condemn the surge of killings of suspected drug users and dealers in the Philippines. In a joint letter drafted by the International Drug Control Consortium, the groups requested the INCB and the UNODC, as global authorities responsible for international drug control, to call for an immediate halt to the killings. Human Rights Watch, one of the signatories of the joint letter, said the spate of extrajudicial killings contradict his pledge to respect human rights and uphold the rule of law. "International drug control agencies need to make clear to Philippines’ President Roderigo Duterte that the surge in killings of suspected drug dealers and users is not acceptable ‘crime control,’ but instead a government failure to protect people’s most fundamental human rights," Human Rights Watch Deputy Asia Director Phelim Kine said a statement. The consortium called on the international drug agencies to relay the following messages to the Philippine government: •President Duterte’s actions to incite these extrajudicial killings cannot be justified as being in line with global drug control. All measures taken to control drugs in the Philippines must be grounded in international law. •Request that President Duterte put an immediate end to incitements to kill people suspected of committing drug-related offenses •Encourage President Duterte to uphold the rule of law and ensure that the right to due process and a fair trial is guaranteed to all people suspected of committing drug-related crimes, in line with the conclusions of the 2016 UNODC World Drug Report •Promote an evidence-based and health-focused approach to people who use drugs, including voluntary treatment and harm reduction services, instead of compulsory detention, in line with UNODC’s guidance •In line with the international human rights obligations of the Philippines — and with the official position of both the UNODC and the INCB — call on the Philippines not to re-impose the death penalty for drug offenses More than 600 people have been killed between May 10 to July 27 as reported by ABS-CBN News, the letter read. The killings occurred in several parts of the country including Manila, Bulacan, Cebu, Rizal, Abra, Bataan, Pangasinan and Cavite. The rapidly rising number of deaths occurring on a daily basis have been carried out by police or "unidentified hitmen." READ MORE..RELATED, De Lima calls for end to killings...RELATED(2) CAYETANO REBUTTAL: DON'T JUMP TO CONCLUSIONS ON KILLINGS WATCH VIDEO:

ALSO: Killings too much to swallow – bishop
[RELATED: De Lima on Duterte ‘name and shame’: Produce evidence]


AUGUST 6- VILLEGAS
Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas said he could no longer stomach the killings of suspected drug users and peddlers. “I do not have to be a bishop to say this. I do not have to be a Catholic to be disturbed by the killings that jar us every time we hear or watch or read the news,” the prelate said in a statement entitled, “Let the Humanity in Us Speak.”  The statement will be read on Sunday in place of the homily during masses in all the churches and oratories in the Archdiocese of Lingayen, Dagupan. “My humanity is in grief. I am in utter disbelief… This is too much to swallow,” Villegas said. He noted that it pains him to see a fellow human hurt. “A portion of my humanity dies when a fellow human dies. Who can say the killed is innocent or guilty? Both the guilty and the innocent are humans,” the bishop stressed. He lamented the sight of a parent and a child grieving over loved ones killed on the sidewalk “or thrown in grassy areas hogtied or masked with tape.”  The prelate said he fears that the country will turn into a “killing field” in its dream to wipe out drug addiction. READ MORE...RELATED,
De Lima on Duterte ‘name and shame’: Produce evidence...

ALSO
De Lima to Duterte administration: 'Stop the killings now'
[After the privilege speech, Cayetano motioned to interpellate De Lima. But the lady senator, citing Senate rules, refused to be asked questions. Cayetano was left with no option but to deliver an apparent privilege speech of his own to defend Duterte and the government's fight against drugs.]
[RELATED: Aguirre - Nobody will be spared in Bilibid drug probe]
[RELATED(2): 6 killed by cops in Bulacan drug buy-busts]


AUGUST 2 -AT THE SENATE: STOP KILLINGS. Senator Leila De Lima delivers her first privilege speech decrying the recent spate of drug-related killings in the country. RAPPLER.COM Photo by Senate PRIB/Alex Nuevaespaña in full report below -
'We cannot base our reactions to these killings on the popularity of the President. Popular or not, murder must stop.' Senator Leila de Lima on Tuesday, August 2, said President Rodrigo Duterte's soaring popularity should not be made as an excuse to support drug-related killings. “A 91% approval rating for the President and what he stands for is a formidable record. But we cannot base our reactions to these killings on the popularity of the President. Popular or not, murder must stop. S-T-O-P. STOP. Stop the killings now!” De Lima said in her first privilege speech as a senator. Philippine National Police (PNP) records show that close to 400 drug suspects have been killed in police operations from July 1 to August 1, 2016. Separate counts by various media outlets put the number to at least 500 or more. De Lima said the killings are “illegal” and “immoral” – a "do-it-yourself justice system." She cited notable cases – from Metro Manila to North Cotabato – with “telltale signs” that the killings were done summarily. “Never mind the police investigation, never mind the public prosecutor, never mind the courts and judges. This is DO-IT-YOURSELF Justice at work. All you need is an acrylic marker, a cardboard, some packing tape, and of course, something to stab or shoot the victim with. And there is no filing fee.” “In the campaign against criminality, we cannot applaud criminal methods merely because we are left unaffected. Life has more value than an accusation written on a piece of cardboard, whether you are rich, or a scum of the earth,” she added. The senator formally asked the Senate to hold an investigation on the killings even as she blasted allies of President Duterte for trying to intimidate her through allegations linking her to drugs. Citing international law and the country’s Bill of Rights, De Lima said that “the right to life is the most ancient and most basic of all human rights.” READ MORE...RELATED, Aguirre: Nobody will be spared in Bilibid drug probe... RELATED(2), 6 killed by cops in Bulacan drug buy-busts...

ALSO: Duterte to name 27 local execs in drugs
[RELATED: Palace - No sacred cows in war on drugs]


AUGUST 2 -PRESIDENT Duterte is set to identify local officials allegedly involved in the illegal drugs trade, a Palace official said on Monday. “My God, you will be shocked,” presidential legal counsel Salvador Panelo said as he revealed that 27 local executives would be named based on intelligence reports.
When asked if he could name a few, Panelo declined, telling reporters: “Hintayin n’yo na lang para mas may impact.” He said the President would reveal the names on Tuesday night or on Wednesday. Panelo said many were from the provinces and belonging to prominent families. He said Duterte personally knew some of the names. “Basta ang sabi ni Presidente, ‘Kilala ko ito pero I have a duty to serve and protect the people,” the presidential legal counsel said./ac/rga FULL REPORT. RELATED, Palace: No sacred cows in war on drugs...

ALSO: De Lima links Duterte’s men to online smear job
[RELATED: Palace mum on De Lima's speech vs 'DIY justice]


AUGUST 3 -EX-DOJ CHIEF NOW SENATOR LEILA DE LIMA
A well-oiled social media operation that is being waged by groups associated with President Duterte has been organized singularly against her, Sen. Leila de Lima claimed yesterday as she described her current dilemma in a privilege speech. De Lima claimed those behind the black propaganda against her involve some of the known subordinates and allies of Duterte who she said has been engaged in a formidable demolition campaign against her, which included a move to have her investigated in the House of Representatives for the proliferation of drugs at the National Bilibid Prisons (NBP) during her stint as secretary of the Department of Justice (DoJ). “They are doing this to a sitting senator. This is not only an attack against me but against any senator who dares to be outspoken. After me, the next target might be anyone who whould not toe the line or who would not dance to their tune. That is why ultimately, this is an attack on the Senate as an independent institution,” she said. De Lima lashed back at the vilification and attacks against her in social media and pronouncements of some of the President’s men, in an apparent attempt to paint her as a coddler and protector of drug lords. “I have been ridiculed and called names in social media. Photos are photoshopped, videos are spliced, lies are manufactured. The magnitude of the propaganda and misinformation is mind-boggling, considering that this is all directed at me. The lies are intended to show me as protector of the Bilibid drug lords. But the truth is, I was the only justice secretary since the 1986 Edsa revolution who dared to eradicate the dominion of the drug lords inside Bilibid (National Bilibid Prison),” she said. “They project me as an enemy of this administration, that I am calling for an investigation on the drug killings because I am a drug lord coddler, that I am against the war on drugs because I am protecting the drug trade,” De Lima said. The senator has been at the receiving end, the past few weeks, of tirades from the likes of Solicitor General Jose Calida, Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II and even Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, the latter was even quoted saying that he will initiate the filing of a resolution in the lower house to probe De Lima in connection with the alleged continuing operations of drugs by convicted drug lords. Calida has recently insinuated the alleged links of De Lima with a high profile inmate and has been alluded to by the senator as supposedly responsible for a video showing one of the convicted drug lords purportedly attending her birthday party few years ago sufacing online. Last Friday, Aguirre claimed that a high-ranking Department of Justice (DoJ) official from the previous administration was in the payroll of the NBP drug lords and De Lima said it can be easily deduced, even if her name was not mentioned, that he was alluding to her. READ MORE...RELATED, Palace mum on De Lima's speech vs 'DIY justice...
RELATED(2) Ex-DOJ execs face probe for drugs


READ FULL MEDIA REPORTS HERE:

Int'l consortium asks global authorities to condemn surge in killings


An apparent victim of summary execution is slumped on a pavement in Tondo, Manila. STAR/Joven Cagande, File

MANILA, AUGUST 8, 2016 (PHILSTAR)  By Patricia Lourdes Viray  Updated August 2, 2016 - A network of more than 200 non-governmental organizations called on the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) to urgently condemn the surge of killings of suspected drug users and dealers in the Philippines.

In a joint letter drafted by the International Drug Control Consortium, the groups requested the INCB and the UNODC, as global authorities responsible for international drug control, to call for an immediate halt to the killings.

Human Rights Watch, one of the signatories of the joint letter, said the spate of extrajudicial killings contradict his pledge to respect human rights and uphold the rule of law.

"International drug control agencies need to make clear to Philippines’ President Roderigo Duterte that the surge in killings of suspected drug dealers and users is not acceptable ‘crime control,’ but instead a government failure to protect people’s most fundamental human rights," Human Rights Watch Deputy Asia Director Phelim Kine said a statement.

The consortium called on the international drug agencies to relay the following messages to the Philippine government:

•President Duterte’s actions to incite these extrajudicial killings cannot be justified as being in line with global drug control. All measures taken to control drugs in the Philippines must be grounded in international law.

•Request that President Duterte put an immediate end to incitements to kill people suspected of committing drug-related offenses

•Encourage President Duterte to uphold the rule of law and ensure that the right to due process and a fair trial is guaranteed to all people suspected of committing drug-related crimes, in line with the conclusions of the 2016 UNODC World Drug Report

•Promote an evidence-based and health-focused approach to people who use drugs, including voluntary treatment and harm reduction services, instead of compulsory detention, in line with UNODC’s guidance

•In line with the international human rights obligations of the Philippines — and with the official position of both the UNODC and the INCB — call on the Philippines not to re-impose the death penalty for drug offenses More than 600 people have been killed between May 10 to July 27 as reported by ABS-CBN News, the letter read. The killings occurred in several parts of the country including Manila, Bulacan, Cebu, Rizal, Abra, Bataan, Pangasinan and Cavite.

The rapidly rising number of deaths occurring on a daily basis have been carried out by police or "unidentified hitmen."

READ MORE...

The consortium noted that despite reports of killings without involvement of violent resistance, Duterte, Solicitor-General Jose Calida and Philippine National Police Chief Ronald "Bato" Dela Rosa assured law enforcers that they would be protected against conviction of criminal offenses amid their anti-drug related operations.

This implies impunity for extrajudicial killings instead of ensuring the protection and rights of people who use drugs and of those suspected of committing drug-related crimes to due process and to a fair trial.

The consortium cited the 2016 World Drug Report which states that "Guaranteeing the rule of law needs to be viewed as a concept wider than mere coercion; it also encompasses inclusive access to justice delivered fairly, in full respect of human rights, through a robust system that places authority in the hands of relevant institutions, with appropriate safeguards."

Kine stressed that the current situation in the Philippines puts human rights, rule of law and the safety and security of Filipinos in "immediate peril."

"International drug control agencies can play an invaluable role in halting the rising body count of suspected drug dealers and users killed by both police and unidentified vigilantes," Kine said.

------------------------------------------

RELATED FROM THE INQUIRER

De Lima calls for end to killings By: Maila Ager @MAgerINQ INQUIRER.net 06:00 PM August 2nd, 2016


SENATOR DE LIMA

ALTHOUGH she supports President Duterte’s war on drugs, neophyte Senator Leila de Lima demanded on Tuesday an end to the spate of killings in the country.

“I must admit, the public reaction to these executions is not in favor of those who oppose it. A 91% approval rating for the President and what he stands for is a formidable record. But we cannot base our reactions to these killings on the popularity of the President. Popular or not, MURDER MUST STOP. S-T-O-P. STOP. Stop the killings now!” De Lima said in her first privilege speech.

READ: Full text of Sen. Leila de Lima’s privilege speech on drugs, killings

“There might not be a manifest public outcry, but there is definitely a seething undercurrent of remonstration against the disregard for human life,” she said.

De Lima recognized that the government must wage war against drugs but she said it could not be done with blood.

“Yes, Mr. President, indeed, we must wage this war against drugs. But there must be another way. There has to be another way. There must be a way other than this method that brings us to our collective descent into impunity, fear, and ultimately, utter and complete inhumanity,” she said.

“We cannot wage the war against drugs with blood. We will only be trading drug addiction with another more malevolent kind of addiction. This is the compulsion for more killing, killings that have now included the innocent…”

“As a human rights advocate and human being, I plead to the government, this administration, and to the President. There must be another way. There has to be another way. We must find another way,” she said.

READ MORE...

De Lima said she was not only concerned by the killings tallied by the Philippine National Police (PNP) as she expressed her “gravest” concern over the deaths allegedly perpetrated by the vigilante groups.

 
https://youtu.be/Onuf2sRDfcI

She then enumerated some of the killings allegedly carried out by vigilantes.

As for the killings carried out supposedly in pursuit of police work, De lima noted the usual explanation that the executions were done in the course of legitimate law enforcement operations.

“Nanlaban daw. Nakipagbarilan daw. Nang-agaw daw ng baril habang naka-posas. Pero alam naman natin na minsan ay style bulok na yang mga paliwanag na yan,” she said.

“We are aware of incidents of police rub-outs. We know about the shortcuts taken by some law enforcers in the guise of self-defense. The use of force, it appears in some cases, may not be necessary, or, if necessary, was not proportional.”

“We still have a system of law that processes and punishes wrongdoers. We have our Bill of Rights that accord the right to be presumed innocent. What is worrisome in this situation is that the war on drugs is becoming a convenient pretext for misguided or utterly corrupt law enforcers to kill just any one,” said the senator.

De Lima said if the administration was sincerely concerned about the spate of killings, then she said it should welcome an investigation by the Senate committee on justice, which she chairs.

“We must call for the accountability of state actors responsible for this terrifying trend in law enforcement, and the investigation of killings perpetrated by the vigilante assassins,” she added.

-------------------------------

RELATED(2) FROM THE INQUIRER

CAYETANO REBUTTAL: DON'T JUMP TO CONCLUSIONS ON KILLINGS
VIDEO:

 
https://youtu.be/rAk3ezZ-M_M?list=PLz3YOVDOo1Uvo71Fg9pLOipvhsxzM6wlu


MANILA TIMES

Killings too much to swallow – bishop August 6, 2016 11:06 pm


VILLEGAS

Lingayen-Dagupan Archbishop Socrates Villegas said he could no longer stomach the killings of suspected drug users and peddlers.

“I do not have to be a bishop to say this. I do not have to be a Catholic to be disturbed by the killings that jar us every time we hear or watch or read the news,” the prelate said in a statement entitled, “Let the Humanity in Us Speak.”

The statement will be read on Sunday in place of the homily during masses in all the churches and oratories in the Archdiocese of Lingayen, Dagupan.

“My humanity is in grief. I am in utter disbelief… This is too much to swallow,” Villegas said.

He noted that it pains him to see a fellow human hurt.

“A portion of my humanity dies when a fellow human dies. Who can say the killed is innocent or guilty? Both the guilty and the innocent are humans,” the bishop stressed.

He lamented the sight of a parent and a child grieving over loved ones killed on the sidewalk “or thrown in grassy areas hogtied or masked with tape.”

The prelate said he fears that the country will turn into a “killing field” in its dream to wipe out drug addiction.

READ MORE...

Villegas emphasized that the youth need a safe and wholesome environment without the menace of drugs.

“We share the dream… It is a great dream for young humanity,” he said.

However, he noted that the “little voice of humanity in us” that is disturbed by the killings is “drowned out by the louder voice of revenge or silenced by the sweet privileges of political clout.”

“I pray that humanity be regained so that the killers may listen to the voice of conscience —that conscience that has been dulled by the sight of too much blood everywhere,” he said.

Villegas believes that reason will prevail and humanity will win in the end.

“I believe. I refuse to be forsaken in this belief. I believe in humanity,” he said.
PNA
8 Responses to Killings too much to swallow – bishop
Ely says:
August 7, 2016 at 8:11 am
Ecclesiastes 3:3
“There is time for everything ; Time to kill and time to heal”
If there are some innocent victims among the hundreds or thousands who died in the war against drug Father , what can you say about the MILLIONS of our YOUTH who are victimized by the Drug Lords /Drug Protectors/Drug Pushers ?
The youth are the hope of the Nation … are they not Father ?
You mentioned that the innocent and the GUILTY are humans … I AGREE !!!
Now , what can you say about the GUILTY HUMANS in Sodom and Gomorrah who were wiped out from this world … they do not deserve to die because THEY ARE HUMANS ?
Why don’t we just pray hard to the Lord to give our President enough WISDOM , STRENGHT and COURAGE to solve the ILLS of our Country ?
By the way Father , if you were the President , what would be your solution to get rid of Corruption, Proliferation of Drugs and Poverty ?
Reply
joey says:
August 7, 2016 at 6:30 am
I would like to suggest to Archbishop Bishop to be proactive rather than condemning through media about the extrajudicial killing of drug users and pushers by letting your shepherds go out to the communities and tell those concerned to give up and be cleaned by surrendering to the authorities. By doing so you can save them by not being wasted and at the same time you can also save their soul. Talking about saving their soul is hypothetical because Jesus saved their soul already through his crucifixion. By letting them surrender and reform it is a great service to the christian community and in the other hand if theres no actios in your part is also a great disseervice to the christian community.
Reply
Guadalupe says:
August 7, 2016 at 5:14 am
The good bishop of Lingayen-Dagupan postures as though he is the only one appalled by the extrajudicial killings happening in the country now. We, the Catholic laity, are too. But our minds’ eyes are not closed. We know where the evil is coming from. It comes from unbridled poverty and an utter lack of cathechism, both of which have not been addressed by the government and the Church.
I am surprised that the good bishop, as well as the other leaders of the Church, who are supposed to be shepherds of the flock, are not “smelling like sheep” ? This was the recent admonition of the beloved Pope Francis . He wants the clergy to be out in the fields tending their flocks and smelling like sheep. Now then, if they had been in touch with their flocks like the model parish priest St. John Mary Vianney, I am sure many souls would have been saved from the clutches of the drug menace. But how does the Church address the poverty problem? By being comfortable first in their air-conditioned enclaves and limousines?
The encyclical SOLlICITUDO REI SOCIALIS by the recently sainted St. John Paul, the great , was unreservedly CLEAR that …… “part of the teaching and most ancient practice of the Church is her conviction, that she is obliged by her vocation,…..to relieve the misery of the suffering, both far and near, not only out of her “abundance” but also out of her “necessities”.. Faced by cases of need, one cannot ignore the needy in favor of superfluous church ornaments and costly furnishings for divine worship; on the contrary, it would be obligatory to sell these goods in order to provide food, drink, clothing and shelter for those who lack these things.”
These words very clearly delineate what the Catholic church should do. But which they don’t. For a start, how about giving up their tax exemptions to give to the poor How about catechizing the poor by their examples.We expect much because we know Christ expects no less.
Reply
delfin says:
August 7, 2016 at 4:26 am
OK Bishop. Kindly tell those thousands of unrepentant drug pushers and drug lords who had willfully choose to trade illegal drugs because they are willing to kill the future of the youth of our nation and causing unbearable miseries of millions of families and untold expenses for rehabilating their children hooked on destructive illegal shabu or coccain! We now see that there are thousands of them who had been willfully destroying the youth with impunity and shamelessness! Tell them that you are going to replace their expenses by charging the drug lords and pushers who disrespect the innocent youth human rights or their millions of victims human right. We are in a very very very very critical situation but you look more on the human rights of these wicked druglords and their pushers? Where is your compassion to the untold millions Filipino youth they had destroyed? Most often religious misplaced compassion and hypocrisy shine brighter than the shabu and coccain. I hope and pray that this word of God will convict the religious hypocrites and the druglords,pushers and their protectors! Psalm 105:7New King James Version (NKJV)
7 He is the Lord our God;
His judgments are in all the earth.Revelation 20:10-15New King James Version (NKJV)
10 The devil, who deceived them, was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone where[a] the beast and the false prophet are. And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.
The Great White Throne Judgment
11 Then I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. And there was found no place for them. 12 And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God,[b] and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. 13 The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. 14 Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.[c] 15 And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.
Reply
Pen says:
August 7, 2016 at 4:01 am
The Bishop appeal is a true mirror reflection of the devil trick trying to allure the victims to his side. Withdraw first your billions money in the bank and give them to the poors so people me believe that you are not hypocrite.
Reply
Aces says:
August 7, 2016 at 3:33 am
Bishop Villegas and the Catholic Church shld also be proactive in condemnation of drug lords and drug usage in the country which has been destroying many families and their children’s lives .The church can’t be blind on this cancerous problem By using the pulpit every Sunday to remind parents to keep a close observation of any changes in their children’s daily activities, for it can severely destroy both their mind and body Pres Duterte need help in saving the society from drug problem , he can’t do it alone, School teacher must be cognizant and report to parents if any unusual behavior of students in the classroom. It is every Filipinos human rights to preserve and contain themselves and live responsibly in a society if we desire growth and wellbeing of one another.
Reply
Dimasalang says:
August 7, 2016 at 3:29 am
We have to be cognizant of how we proclaim or declare statement about humanity – in that we are as equally concern to the lives of our countryman damaged and destroyed by drug cartels and their infrastructure – and that its proven that we are concern by previous declarations in the past. Otherwise, we will appear hypocritical.
Reply
jun marcelino says:
August 7, 2016 at 1:30 am
Bishop Villegas, why not denounce the mass murder of thousands of innocent civilians who were killed by ISIS and the beheading of the foreigners by the abu sayyaf? What these terrorists group did are much worst than what you are saying now.

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RELATED FROM THE INQUIRER

De Lima on Duterte ‘name and shame’: Produce evidence By: Tarra Quismundo @TarraINQ
Philippine Daily Inquirer 01:11 PM August 7th, 2016


Senator Leila de Lima (left) is challenging President Rodrigo Duterte to produce evidence and file cases against those he named as supposedly involved in the illegal drugs trade. JOAN BONDOC / INQUIRER FILE

MANILA, Philippines — While admiring President Duterte’s political will in the campaign against drugs, Sen. Leila de Lima on Sunday emphasized the need for evidence and due process in bringing drug suspects to justice, or else the public revelation of their names may be regarded as no less than a “witch hunt.”

Sought for comment, De Lima, chair of the Senate committee on justice and human rights, said the latest names aired by Duterte in a speech early Sunday should be pursued in court if there was evidence, as the law dictated.

“To be honest, it’s difficult to pass judgment on the style of the President, especially that a great majority of our people seem to approve of this naming and shaming strategy,” De Lima told the Inquirer when reached yesterday.

She added, “If the President thinks it’s an effective strategy, then who are we to dictate on him. His strong will and great determination to end the drug problem deserve high praise and credit.”

“Having said that, as a student of constitutional law, let me express these thoughts: If there is evidence against these people he has named and shamed, cases should just be filed against them so that warrants for their arrest can be issued. If there is no evidence, then this is a plain and simple witch hunt,” she said.

The lawmaker, who recently appealed for an end to the string of deaths of suspected criminals, warned that being publicly named as a drug suspect was “already a death sentence,” given the President’s standing “shoot-to-kill” order on narco-politicians who would resist arrest.

“We are already in the slippery slope towards tyranny, without martial law, when we allow one man to be judge, jury and executioner. This is just the start,” De Lima said.

“The end game is just too terrible to imagine, when anyone can be accused and shot on sight based on a list that has the same legal value as a grocery list,” she said.

De Lima is set to conduct a legislative inquiry on the spate of killings of drug suspects in police operations and vigilante-style executions amid Duterte’s drug war./rga

 
https://youtu.be/YNRzuyFErXk


RAPPLER.COM

De Lima to Duterte administration: 'Stop the killings now'


AT THE SENATE: STOP KILLINGS. Senator Leila De Lima delivers her first privilege speech decrying the recent spate of drug-related killings in the country. Photo by Senate PRIB/Alex Nuevaespaña

'We cannot base our reactions to these killings on the popularity of the President. Popular or not, murder must stop.'

MANILA, Philippines – Senator Leila de Lima on Tuesday, August 2, said President Rodrigo Duterte's soaring popularity should not be made as an excuse to support drug-related killings.

“A 91% approval rating for the President and what he stands for is a formidable record. But we cannot base our reactions to these killings on the popularity of the President. Popular or not, murder must stop. S-T-O-P. STOP. Stop the killings now!” De Lima said in her first privilege speech as a senator.

Philippine National Police (PNP) records show that close to 400 drug suspects have been killed in police operations from July 1 to August 1, 2016. Separate counts by various media outlets put the number to at least 500 or more.

De Lima said the killings are “illegal” and “immoral” – a "do-it-yourself justice system."

She cited notable cases – from Metro Manila to North Cotabato – with “telltale signs” that the killings were done summarily.

“Never mind the police investigation, never mind the public prosecutor, never mind the courts and judges. This is DO-IT-YOURSELF Justice at work. All you need is an acrylic marker, a cardboard, some packing tape, and of course, something to stab or shoot the victim with. And there is no filing fee.”

“In the campaign against criminality, we cannot applaud criminal methods merely because we are left unaffected. Life has more value than an accusation written on a piece of cardboard, whether you are rich, or a scum of the earth,” she added.

The senator formally asked the Senate to hold an investigation on the killings even as she blasted allies of President Duterte for trying to intimidate her through allegations linking her to drugs.

Citing international law and the country’s Bill of Rights, De Lima said that “the right to life is the most ancient and most basic of all human rights.”

READ MORE...

“Ang magagandang layunin ng gyera laban sa droga ay nasisira nitong mga karumal-dumal na pagpatay. Tandaan sana natin na ang pagpatay na walang katwiran at walang legal na basehan ay krimeng malinaw. Ito ay iligal. Ito ay imoral,” De Lima said.

(The good objectives of the war against drugs are destroyed by these killings. Let us remember that killings without legal basis or reason is a clear form of crime. This is illegal. This is immoral.)

Cayetano rebuttal

De Lima's speech did not sit well with Senator Alan Peter Cayetano, Duterte's running mate in the May 2016 polls.

After the speech, Cayetano motioned to interpellate De Lima. But the lady senator, citing Senate rules, refused to be asked questions.

Cayetano was left with no option but to deliver an apparent privilege speech of his own to defend Duterte and the government's fight against drugs.

"If the problem was too big for the Aquino administration and the secretary, sya na rin po nagsabi kanina na it was too big, but this President, sinabi nya titignan ko sa mga mata ang mga pusher na ito at hindi ko sila aatrasan (he said I will look these pushers in the eye and I will not back down). Never ko po narinig sa kanya na ung mga nanlaban patayin (I never heard him say that those who fight back should be killed)," Cayetano said.

"Never sinabi ng ating Pangulo ang murder ay di paparusahan. In fact sinabi nya patay kayo sa akin mga pulis pag umabuso kayo," he added.

(Our President never said that murder would not be punished. In fact, he warned the police that they would answer to him if they abuse power.)

De Lima's colleagues in the Liberal Party, senators Risa Hontiveros and Francis Pangilinan, also raised concern on the recent increase in the number of drug-related killings. – Rappler.com

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RELATED FROM GMA NEWS NETWORK

Aguirre: Nobody will be spared in Bilibid drug probe Published August 2, 2016 7:21pm Updated August 2, 2016 7:29pm By MARK MERUEÑAS, GMA News


AGUIRRE

AGUIRRE: Nobody, not even ranking officials, would be spared in the ongoing investigation of the Department of Justice on the alleged participation of the agency's former members in illegal activities inside the New Bilibid Prison.

Last week, Aguirre revealed that at least two former DOJ officials from the Aquino administration, along with religious personnel and NBP officials, are being probed for their alleged complicity in the drug trade inside the national penitentiary.

NOT FOCUSED ON ANY SPECIFIC PERSON

Asked if former Justice Secretary Leila de Lima would also be the subject of the DOJ investigation, Aguirre on Tuesday said: "Actually kahit sino, basta lumabas doon sa investigation eh. Any level."

"We are not focused on any specific person. Ang iniimbestigahan naming ay kung papaano, bakit kumalat, bakit naging grabe ang problema ng drugs," he added.

At the Senate, De Lima delivered a privilege speech not only to criticize the spate of killings of drug suspects but also to deny insinuations that she did nothing to stop illegal drug operations inside the national penitentiary.

De Lima said she started the war on drugs at the New Bilibid Prison where she even personally led the raid on the drug lords’ dens.

"Sa termino ko lang po bilang Justice secretary nag-umpisang maglinis sa Bilibid. Sa termino ko lang po giniba ang mga mararangyang kubol ng drug lords at naitapon sila sa Building 14, hiwalay sa mga ordinaryong preso," she said.

Fact-finding body

Meanwhile, Aguirre clarified that the ongoing probe was being limited only to the last six years under the Aquino administration.

"Iyong sa amin, eh talagang iyong lahat ng nangyari noong mga nakaraang administration [ay isasali sa imbestigasyon]. Why did illegal drugs proliferate? Kasali sa investigation iyan," he said.

He said the fact-finding body that would dig deeper into the alleged involvement of government officials in the illegal drug trade would be formed within the week, saying there is no deadline for the results of the probe.

SEIRIES OF RAIDS

Aguirre also revealed that despite the series of raids carried out by the Philippine National Police's Special Action Force at the NBP which led to the confiscation of 160 mobile phones, more prohibited items were subsequently seized inside the penitentiary.

He said a drug lord was still able to reach a reporter over mobile phone.

"Nakakalusot pa rin. Kasi iyong ibang nakuha nilang shabu, nakabaon na sa lupa eh," he said.

"The cellphones confiscated are being forensically examined so malalaman natin diyan kung saan, kung sino iyong tinatawagan ng mga drug lords sa loob," he added. — RSJ, GMA News

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RELATED(2) FROM THE INQUIRER

6 killed by cops in Bulacan drug buy-busts By: Carmela Reyes-Estrope @inquirerdotnet Inquirer Central Luzon 07:28 PM August 2nd, 2016


Bloodshed continues in war vs drugs. (INQUIRER FILE PHOTO/RAFFY LERMA)

CAMP GEN. ALEJO SANTOS, Bulacan — Police killed six drug suspects during buy-bust operations in different towns of Bulacan.

In Marilao town, Michael Lim, 47, was shot dead in a gun battle with policemen at 12:15 a.m. on Tuesday (Aug. 2).

At 2:45 a.m. in San Rafael, a drug suspect identified only as “Paypay” from Barangay (village) Talacsan was killed by policemen.

Earlier in Norzagaray town on Monday, police shot dead Benedict Florentino and Raymond Magat at 3:30 a.m. in an operation in Sitio Bulalo, Barangay (village) Bitungol.

At 3:50 p.m. on Monday in the City of San Jose Del Monte, a suspect named “Leo” and his unidentified companion were killed after they fired shots at policemen. SFM


INQUIRER

Duterte to name 27 local execs in drugs By: Nestor Corrales @NCorralesINQ INQUIRER.net
05:45 PM August 2nd, 2016

PRESIDENT Duterte is set to identify local officials allegedly involved in the illegal drugs trade, a Palace official said on Monday.

“My God, you will be shocked,” presidential legal counsel Salvador Panelo said as he revealed that 27 local executives would be named based on intelligence reports.

When asked if he could name a few, Panelo declined, telling reporters: “Hintayin n’yo na lang para mas may impact.”

He said the President would reveal the names on Tuesday night or on Wednesday.

Panelo said many were from the provinces and belonging to prominent families.

He said Duterte personally knew some of the names.

“Basta ang sabi ni Presidente, ‘Kilala ko ito pero I have a duty to serve and protect the people,” the presidential legal counsel said./ac/rga

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RELATED FROM PHILSTAR

Palace: No sacred cows in war on drugs By Alexis Romero (philstar.com) | Updated August 7, 2016 - 4:43pm 15 98 googleplus0 0


Filipino policeman secure an area as drug addicts and dealers voluntarily surrender at a police station in Manila, Philippines on July 4, 2016. AP/Aaron Favila

MANILA, Philippines -- President Duterte on Sunday linked more than a hundred incumbent and former local executives, lawmakers, judges and uniformed personnel in the illegal drugs trade, which he described as a “pandemic” that is spreading like wildfire across the country.

Eight members of the judiciary, 56 incumbent and former mayors and lawmakers and 95 active and retired members of the police, military, jail and fire bureaus were included in Duterte’s list and were given 24 hours to surrender or they would be tracked down by security forces.

The president ordered the pullout of the police escorts of mayors in the list. He instructed police officers securing the local executives to return to their respective mother units or they would be dismissed from the service.

Duterte also directed the cancellation of the licenses of the mayors’ firearms as well as their authority to supervise the law enforcement units in their area. Judges tagged in the narcotics trade were asked to report to the Supreme Court. Police officers and soldiers who are on the list were instructed to report to their superiors.

“[If] you do not do that, I will order the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the entire PNP (Philippine National Police) to hunt for you,” Duterte said in a speech during the wake for battle fatalities at the Naval Forces Eastern Mindanao headquarters in Davao City.

Duterte said people in government who are involved in illegal drugs are to blame for the drug menace plaguing the country.

“There are things that are really reaching crisis (proportions) and it is not even epidemic. It’s pandemic,” the president said.

“It was really spreading like wildfire and I was scared for my country because I am a Filipino,” he added.

Duterte claimed that there is nothing personal with his decision to reveal the names of people who are allegedly involved in illegal drugs. He stressed that revealing the truth about the condition of the country is his sworn duty.

“If there is a rule, a law, either you enforce it or none at all,” the president said.

Duterte also lashed at critics who claimed that his shame campaign violates due process.

'Due process has nothing to do with my mouth'

“Due process has nothing to do with my mouth. There are no proceedings here, no lawyers. I speak for the people so they will know the truth about our lives here in the Philippines. I’m the only president who is doing this,” he said.

The president, nevertheless, assured those on the list that they would not be deprived of their constitutional rights.

“It might be true, it might not be true. But then these people might be sued, administrative or criminal, then they should have due process, presumption of innocence. All of their rights under the constitution, I will give it to them,” he said.

The eight judges accused of involvement in the narcotics trade were a certain Judge Mupas of Dasmarinas, Cavite, Judge Reyes of Baguio City, Judge Sabilo of Regional Trial Court Branch 13 Iloilo City, Judge Casiple of Kalibo, Aklan, Municipal Trial Court Judge Rene Gonzales, Judge Navidad of the Regional Trial Court Calbayog City, Judge Exekiel Dagala of a municipal trial court and Judge Dapa of Siargao.

Thirteen of the 56 incumbent and former local executives were from Luzon namely Mayor Reynaldo Flores of Naguilian, La Union, Mayor Dante Garcia of Tubao, La Union, Mayor Martin de Guzman of Bauang, La Union, Mayor Marjorie Apel Salazar of Lasam, Cagayan, Mayor Goto Violago of San Rafael, Bulacan, Mayor Marino Morales of Mabalacat, Pampanga, Mayor Felix Castillo of Langiden, Abra, former Mayor Eufronio Eriguel of Agoo, La Union, Mayor Jesus Celeste of Bolinao, Pangasinan, Mayor Jose Miranda of Santiago City, Isabela, Mayor Vicente Amante of San Pablo City, Laguna, Mayor Ryan Dolor of Bauan, Batangas and Vice Mayor Edgardo Trinidad of El Nido, Palawan.

Sixteen of the local executives tagged in the drug trade are from Visayas. They include Mayor Alex Centena of Calinog, Iloilo, Mayor Julius Ronald Pacificador of Hamtic, Antique, Mayor Jed Mabilog of Iloilo City, Mayor Sigfredo Betita of Carles, Iloilo, Mayor Mariano Malones of Maasin, Iloilo, former Mayor Michael Rama of Cebu City, Mayor Hector Ong of Laoang, Northern Samar, Mayor Rolando Espinosa of Albuera, Samar, Mayor Beda Canamaque of Basay, Negros Oriental, former Mayor Madeline Ong of Laoang, Northern Samar, Vice Mayor Francis Ansing Amboy of Maasin, Iloilo, former Guimaras Rep. JC Rahman Nava, and party-list Rep. Jeffrey Celis.

Espinosa surrendered to authorities last week after Duterte threatened to issue a “shoot on sight” order against him. Espinosa’s son Kerwin was also asked to surrender but he remains at large.

Three Visayas officials whose positions were not mentioned were also part of the list namely Fralz Sabalones of San Fernando, Cebu, Antonio Pesina of Iloilo City and Erwin Plagata of Iloilo City.

Almost half or 27 of the 56 local officials linked to illegal drugs are from Mindanao. They include former Mayor Abubakar Abdukarim Afdal of Labangan, Zamboanga del Sur, Mayor Gamar Ahay Janihim of Sirawai, Zamboanga del Norte, Mayor Fahad Salic of Marawi City, Mayor Mohammad Ali Abenal of Marantao, Lanao del Sur, former Mayor Benahar Tulawie of Talipao, Sulu, Mayor Omar Solitario Ali of Marawi City, Vice Mayor Abdul Wahab Sabal of Talitay, Magundanao, Rep. Guillermo Romarate Jr. of the second district of Surigao del Norte, and former board member Ricardo Parojinog of Misamis.

Other Mindanao officials who were in the list were David Navarro of Pagadian City, Zamboanga del Sur, Bobby Alingan of Kolambugan, Lanao del Norte, Yusofa Monder Bugong Ramin of Iligan City, Lanao del Norte, Jessie Aguilera of Alegria, Surigao del Norte, Jamal Dadayan of Buadiposo-Buntong, Lanao del Sur, Sabdullah Macabago of Saguiaran, Lanao del Sur, Muslim Aline Macadatu of Lumbatan, Lanao del Sur, Rasul Sangki of Ampatuan, Maguindanao, Montaser Sabal of Talitay, Maguindanao, Vicman Montawal of Datu Montawal, Maguindanao, Samsudin Dimaukom of Datu Saudi Ampatuan, Maguindanao, Norodin Salasal of Datu Salibo, Maguindanao, Reynaldo Parojinog of Ozamiz City, Nova Princess Parojinog Echavez of Ozamiz City, Otto Montawal of Datu Montawal, Maguindanao, Nida Dimagkon of Datu Saudi Ampatuan, Maguindanao, Arafat Salic of Marawi City, and Rasmiyah Macabago of Saguiaran, Lanao del Sur.

The 95 active and retired uniformed men tagged in narcotics were retired Police Inspector Rolando Batulayan, Police Superintendent Maristelo Manalo of the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG), Chief Inspector Roberto Palisoc of Station 7 Manila Police District, retired P/Supt. Ciceron Ada, Chief Inspector Eric Buenaventura of Navotas, PO2 Geraldine Bautista Manuel of the Police Regional Office (PRO) 2, SPO3 Ronald Calap of Isabela Provincial Police Office (PPO), POC Rodel Samoledo of Lalio Police Station, PO3 Cecilio Domingo of Nueva Ecija Criminal Investigation and Detection Team, PO2 Ryan Mendoza of Tarlac Police Station, Jeffrey Serafica of Butuan PPO, PO1 Norman Adarlo of Puerto Galera National Prosecution Service, and Mark Canete of Regional Public Safety Battalion MIMAROPA.

Others in the list include PO1 Mark Christian Catalina of Camarines Norte police, PO2 Alan Carpio of Police Community Precinct (PCP) 8 Pasay City, PO3 Eric Lazo of Quezon City Police District Station (QCPD) 6, PO3 Alexander Macabeo of PCP 3 Paranaque City, PO3 Johnny Mahilum of QCPD Station 6 Batasan, PO2 Celito Melendrez of Binangonan Police Station, a certain retired general Valerio of Santa Barbara, Iloilo, retired general and now Daanbantayan, Cebu mayor Vicente Loot and Western Visayas regional director Chief Supt. Bernardo Diaz.

Loot and Diaz were among the five active and retired police generals linked by the president to illegal drugs last month. The other three were retired police Deputy Director General Marcelo Garbo, Jr., former National Capital Region Police Office head Chief Supt. Joel Pagdilao and former Quezon City Police District director Chief Supt. Edgardo Tinio.

The five have denied any involvement in illegal drugs and have expressed readiness to subject themselves to investigation.

Other uniformed personnel who were mentioned by Duterte yesterday include a certain General Idio of Calbayog City, retired Police Superintendent Floro of Antique City PNP, Police Superintendent Kashmir Disomangcop of Iloilo City police, Police Superintendent Delia Paz of the regional Directorate for Investigation and Detective Management, a certain Police Superintendent Genepa of the Regional Intelligence Unit, Police Superintendent Ipil Duenas, a certain Police Superintendent Condag, Police Superintendent Eugenio Malic of thee PNP Maritime Group, a certain Lamsis who used to head an anti-drug unit in Antique, a certain Police Superintendent Gomboc, a certain Police Superintendent Lebin, a certain Chief Inspector Maymay. Senior Inspector Kenneth Militar of Iloilo, a certain Senior Inspector Donasco, a certain Police Inspector de Jose of the Western Visayas Special Operations Group, a certain Police Inspector Duarte who was assigned in Arevalo, Iloilo, Police Inspector Vicente Vicente, who served as chief of police in Banate, and Police Inspector Romeo Santander, former intelligence chief of Cebu.

Completing the list are PO2 Michael Cortez of Barile Police Station, SPO1 Jen dela Victoria of Police Station 5 in Cebu, SPO1 Onel Nabua of Barile Police Station, PO2 Jomar Ibanez of Lapu-Lapu Police Station, PO3 Ryan Martus Kiamco of Cebu Provincial Office, Chief Inspector Ibrahim Jabiran of Zamboanga City Police Office,

Chief Inspector Perfecto Abrasaldo Awi Jr. of Misamis Oriental, Police Inspector Roy Montes of Iligan PRO, Police Superintendent Ricardo Gando Pulot, chief of police of Quezon, Bukidnon, Police Inspector Martin Plaza ,former Panabo intelligence chief, PO1 Pierre Dizo of Zamboanga del Sur, PO3 Omar Juani of Zamboanga City Public Safety Company, a certain Rommel Mansul of Police Regional Office Zamboanga, PO3 Daryl Page of Tabasan Municipal Station, SPO1 Totong Joe Valdez, SPO4 Rodrigo Ramos of the Bukidnon PRO, SPO1 Reynaldo dela Victoria of Cagayan de Oro, SPO3 Emilio Mendoza of Police Precinct 5 in Iligan City, a certan Marlo Espinosa of Bukidnon,

SPO3 Richie Mat of CIDG Mati, Davao Oriental, SPO3 Rosell Iliviera of CIDG Tagum, Davao del Norte, PO3 Jessie Balabag, who is assigned in the Davao region, PO3 Filomeno Toronia of Digos Police Station, PO1 Glenn Alicarte of PRO Soccsksargen, PO1 Philip Pantarolia of Tacurong City Police Office, SPO1 Gerry dela Rosa of the South Cotabato Provincial Police Office, of General Santos City Police Office, PO3 Estelito Solanio of Malongon Municipal Police Station in Sarangani, PO1 Jerebel Ocsio, SPO1 Ernesto Billones of Metro Manila, JS1 Lito Montemayor of the Roxas District Jail Aparri,

PO1 Vicente Reynaldo Celis of Metro Manila, PG Drexel Saet of MIMAROPA region, SPO1 Felix Tubil of Central Luzon, SPO3 Nicolas Ponce Angeles of Central Luzon, SPO2 Rod Erseni - Marinduque Bureau of Fire Protection, FO1 Reynaldo Valencia of Claveria Police Station, S/Sgt. Vic dela Cruz of MIMAROPA, Brig. Gen. Leoncio Daniega of Metro Manila, SPO3 Gerry Mendoza of Metro Manila, Reymante Dayto of Bicol, Reymar Dayto of Bicol, Renato Zamora of Western Visayas, J1 Alan Manatad of Central Visayas, SPO3 Christie Cielo Tingad of Central Visayas, Casimiro Castro, a militiaman from the 38th Infantry Battalion in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), Pfc. Philip Miro of the 40th Infantry Battalion, Cpl. Cusinan Lopez of the 52nd Infantry Battalion also in ARMM, Pfc. Mamadali Ipad of the 64th Infantry Battalion, a certain Yasin Abolgalib, JO1 Alfredo Ogacho, FO1 Nicolas Ponce Ablaca, FO1 Ricardo Ibanez, Marine Cpl. Alfrenz Gurias Abedin, and a certain Jimmy Manlangit of Soccsksargen region.

More names to be revealed

Presidential Communication Secretary Martin Andanar said cases would be filed against the people on the list once authorities complete their investigation.

He said the president may reveal more names once the extent of their involvement in the narcotics trade has been verified.

“I do not want to preempt the president and I don’t know when he will announce the other names. But based on what he said last night, there are other names being confirmed and being checked,” Andanar told radio station dzRB on Sunday.

“There will be no sacred cows,” he added.

Asked how many politicians in the list backed Duterte’s presidential bid, Andanar said: “The president said only one governor and one congressman supported him. The governor is (Ilocos Norte) Gov. Imee Marcos and the congressman is (Davao City 1st district) Congressman Karlo Nograles. The rest supported other candidates.”

Andanar could not say if former Cabinet secretaries or other ranking government officials are in Duterte’s list. He said the naming of members of judiciary would not cause a constitutional crisis because the judges included in the list were asked to report to the Supreme Court.

“It's now up to the Supreme Court and the leaders of the judiciary to solve the problem and to investigate,” Andanar said.

Andanar called on the public to support the government’s anti-drug campaign, which critics fear would spawn rampant violation of human rights.

“If we don’t help each other, we won’t be able to solve the problem easily,” he said.


TRIBUNE

De Lima links Duterte’s men to online smear job Written by Angie M. Rosales Wednesday, 03 August 2016 00:00


EX-DOJ CHIEF NOW SENATOR LEILA DE LIMA

A well-oiled social media operation that is being waged by groups associated with President Duterte has been organized singularly against her, Sen. Leila de Lima claimed yesterday as she described her current dilemma in a privilege speech.

De Lima claimed those behind the black propaganda against her involve some of the known subordinates and allies of Duterte who she said has been engaged in a formidable demolition campaign against her, which included a move to have her investigated in the House of Representatives for the proliferation of drugs at the National Bilibid Prisons (NBP) during her stint as secretary of the Department of Justice (DoJ).

“They are doing this to a sitting senator. This is not only an attack against me but against any senator who dares to be outspoken. After me, the next target might be anyone who whould not toe the line or who would not dance to their tune. That is why ultimately, this is an attack on the Senate as an independent institution,” she said.

De Lima lashed back at the vilification and attacks against her in social media and pronouncements of some of the President’s men, in an apparent attempt to paint her as a coddler and protector of drug lords.

“I have been ridiculed and called names in social media. Photos are photoshopped, videos are spliced, lies are manufactured. The magnitude of the propaganda and misinformation is mind-boggling, considering that this is all directed at me. The lies are intended to show me as protector of the Bilibid drug lords. But the truth is, I was the only justice secretary since the 1986 Edsa revolution who dared to eradicate the dominion of the drug lords inside Bilibid (National Bilibid Prison),” she said.

“They project me as an enemy of this administration, that I am calling for an investigation on the drug killings because I am a drug lord coddler, that I am against the war on drugs because I am protecting the drug trade,” De Lima said.

The senator has been at the receiving end, the past few weeks, of tirades from the likes of Solicitor General Jose Calida, Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II and even Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, the latter was even quoted saying that he will initiate the filing of a resolution in the lower house to probe De Lima in connection with the alleged continuing operations of drugs by convicted drug lords.

Calida has recently insinuated the alleged links of De Lima with a high profile inmate and has been alluded to by the senator as supposedly responsible for a video showing one of the convicted drug lords purportedly attending her birthday party few years ago sufacing online.


AGUIRRE

Last Friday, Aguirre claimed that a high-ranking Department of Justice (DoJ) official from the previous administration was in the payroll of the NBP drug lords and De Lima said it can be easily deduced, even if her name was not mentioned, that he was alluding to her.

READ MORE...

“I am outraged that he has qualified this matter-of-fact statement with the actual truth that he has yet to create a task force that will yet conduct an actual investigation on his forgone conclusion that indeed there were pay-offs to DoJ officials. This is the justice secretary confused about his law school memory on how due process works. Accuse only after you investigate,” she said.

Alvarez’ move, the senator said, not only goes against what they call as inter-parliamentary courtesy, subjecting a specific member of its co-equal Senate to the lower house.

“It is an affront to the Senate as an institution committed by none other than the leader of its co-equal body in Congress. But I will not use that time-honored principle as my primary defense,” De Lima said.

“My defense against the Speaker’s call for my investigation in the House is not inter-parliamentary courtesy. That is your defense, when you defend me as a senator of the Republic and this Senate as an institution from this blatant break of tradition in courtesy between the two Houses and whenever you decide to demand an end to all this foolishness, before it blows up in our faces,” she said.

De Lima’s defense

“My only defense is my honor and my integrity,” De Lima said.

“I cannot stay silent in the face of all these blatant lies created in the backroom of a media strategy office suite. I will not fall without a fight. I will not go into that good night without nary a whimper while all these misguided men use the President’s war against drugs as their platform to destroy any elected public official who dares question methods by which this war is waged,” she added.

“I cannot let these men run this demolition outfit only for them to accomplish their own personal and political agendas, to curry favor with the President and get a larger share of the spoils of the Executive power,” she said.

De Lima also addressed the issue on the alleged continuing operation of illegal drugs trade in NBP saying that the raids she personally led at the National Penitentiary confirmed that there’s no shabu laboratory inside the jail facility.

“Yes, there is no shabu laboratory inside the Bilibid Prison, not even in the tunnels under it. Those who will search the tunnels will get a whiff, not of the smell of cooking methamphetamine but of methane that comes from the human waste of the prisoners above,” she said.

The senator stood pat in her call enjoining the upper chamber to conduct an inquiry on what she claimed as daily executions of drug users and pushers as the war on drugs is becoming a convenient pretext for misguided or utterly corrupt law enforcers to kill just any one.

De Lima said the Senate must continue opposing the murder of the innocents as well as that of the suspects.

“We must call for the accountability of state actors responsible for this terrifying trend in law enforcement, and the investigation of killings perpetrated by the vigilante assassins,” she said.

“In the campaign against criminality, we cannot applaud criminal methods merely because we are left unaffected. Life has more value than an accusation written on a piece of cardboard whether you are rich or a scum of the earth. Needless to say, all lives matter,” she added.

Based on the official records of the Philippine National Police, there are about 395 drug offenders who were killed in police operations – or a daily average of 13 deaths every day from July 1 to Aug. 1.

However, for instance, a media research group showed that since May 10, there have been 748 individuals killed in the administration’s campaign against illegal drugs, of which 464 were from police operations, 215 by unidentified gunmen and 69 salvaged.

“Higher figures are even reported by certain media outlets. I am not saying that all or most of those incidents are cases of summary killings. But several do have telltale signs that several are,” the neophyte senator noted.

De Lima explained that the sheer figures of deaths by extrajudicial killings and summary executions seems to numb some people desperate to weed out the cruelty of illegal drug trade on Filipino families, especially among children.

“The fact that our attention span has waned as I enumerated only a fraction of these killings already shows how desensitized we have grown to the killings as mere numbers and statistics,” she said.

“We must force ourselves to be reminded that the victims are always flesh and blood to their families and loved ones. They are not rice cake or pork blood stew,” she added.

SENATE PROBE

The Senate justice and human rights committee which De Lima chairs and the Senate public order and illegal drugs chaired by Sen. Panfilo Lacson are expected to open a joint Senate investigation into the spate of extrajudicial and vigilante killings this month.

Duterte’s defeated vice presidential candidate and staunch defender in the upper chamber, Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano, tried to interpellate De Lima on her speech but the latter refused.

“Mr. President, I believe that a privilege speaker has also the privilege to decline an interpellation. Precisely it’s a privilege speech, it’s not a sponsorship of any bill or resolution. So I respectfully decline. Thank you,” she said.

Nonetheless, Cayetano, in an attempt to defend the Duterte administration’s efforts to curb the illegal drugs trade, even justified the ongoing reported killings.

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RELATED FROM PHILSTAR

Palace mum on De Lima's speech vs 'DIY justice' By Alexis Romero (philstar.com) | Updated August 3, 2016 - 4:41pm 6 30 googleplus0 0


President Rodrigo R. Duterte shakes hands with Senator Leila de Lima before delivering his State of the Nation Address at the Gallery of the Batasang Pambansa in Quezon City on Monday, July 25, 2016. PRESIDENTIAL PHOTOGRAPHERS DIVISION/KING RODRIGUEZ

MANILA, Philippines — Malacañan kept mum Wednesday on Sen. Leila de Lima’s tirades against what she described as the “do-it-yourself justice” in the administration’s relentless campaign against illegal drugs.

Presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella said it would be up to the legislature to decide whether to investigate the issues raised by the senator in her first privilege speech.

RELATED: De Lima decries 'do-it-yourself' justice vs drug suspects

“President Duterte has not made any comments regarding Senator de Lima and basically that is the job of the legislative to be able to exercise their independent authority,” Abella said in a press conference.

“They (Senate) are welcome to make the necessary investigation as they see fit,” he added.

Abella, nevertheless, said the president is looking into allegations that law enforcers are resorting to extrajudicial killings in the war against narcotics.

“He (Duterte) is actually in touch with the hierarchy. He’s in touch with hierarchy of authority and he communicates exactly where he stands,” the presidential spokesman said.

“In other words, he is ensuring that the process is duly carried out by being personally in touch with those who are in charge,” he added.

READ: The rights of those accused of doing wrong

On Tuesday, de Lima raised concerns about the recent spate of killings that have been linked to the government’s campaign against drugs and criminality.

De Lima said the Duterte administration should find another way to curb illegal drugs other than the method “that brings us to our collective descent into impunity, fear and ultimately, utter and complete inhumanity.”

The senator warned that the killings could desensitize Filipinos to the executions of people, whom she said are not objects but are “flesh and blood to their families and loved ones.”

“What is worrisome in this situation is that the war on drugs is becoming a convenient pretext for misguided or utterly corrupt law enforcers to kill just any one,” the senator added.

Asked to react to notions that the rising number of killings is affecting the image of the Philippines before the international community, Abella said: “The government knows exactly where it stands, okay. It knows its position and it knows exactly what it — it knows exactly the next moves that it needs to make. The government stands on principle.”

Duterte previously said that he does not condone extralegal killings and that as a lawyer he knows the limits of his powers. He, however, maintained that human rights should not be used to protect wrongdoers.

“To our police officers and other officials, do your job and you will have the unwavering support of the Office of the President. I will be with you all the way. Abuse your authority and there will be hell to pay,” Duterte said in his first State of the Nation Address last July 25.

“Human rights must work to uplift human dignity. But human rights cannot be used as a shield or an excuse to destroy the country — your country and my country,” he added.

More than 400 people have been killed in anti-drug operations while more than 5,000 others have been arrested, latest police data showed. More than 560,000 drug pushers and users have surrendered to authorities.


PHILSTAR

Ex-DOJ execs face probe for drugs By Edu Punay (The Philippine Star) | Updated August 3, 2016 - 12:00am 0 2 googleplus0 0


Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II revealed plans to create this week a fact-finding panel to look into information that at least two former ranking DOJ officials benefited from millions in drug money from high-profile inmates at the NBP. File photo

MANILA, Philippines – Former secretary and now Sen. Leila de Lima and other former officials of the Department of Justice (DOJ) will be included in the investigation on the proliferation of illegal drugs inside the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) in Muntinlupa City.

Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II hinted this yesterday as he revealed plans to create this week a fact-finding panel to look into information that at least two former ranking DOJ officials benefited from millions in drug money from high-profile inmates at the NBP.

“Our objective really is to find out what happened in the previous administration and why did illegal drugs proliferate in Bilibid.

Everybody in the DOJ from the past administration – at all levels – will be included in the investigation,” Aguirre said in a press conference.

Aguirre clarified the probe would not focus on specific persons.

“Whoever will come up in the investigation, we will pursue them if their names come up,” he said.

Aguirre said he would create a team this week for the conduct of the probe.

De Lima, a known critic of President Duterte, has publicly criticized the administration for its supposed disregard of human rights in its anti-criminality campaign.

Last week, Aguirre said he received information that two former DOJ officials allegedly benefited from millions in drug money coming from high-profile inmates and were also engaged in alleged corruption involving Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) funds.

These two past DOJ officials allegedly connived with high-profile inmates and allowed them virtual luxury inside the NBP.

The two officials reportedly took a cut from the daily meal allowance for NBP inmates.

READ MORE...

Aguirre added some NBP officers were even liquidated upon the order of some high-profile inmates.


DOJ CHIEF AGUIRRE

Accounting After more than a month of an intensified campaign against illegal drugs, the Philippine National Police (PNP) is now reviewing the performance of police units.

The PNP said a total of 402 drug personalities have been killed either in police operations or by vigilantes from July 1 to Aug. 2, or the first 32 days of the Duterte administration.

A total of 5,418 illegal drug offenders, on the other hand, were arrested in the same period. The PNP said a total of 565,806 have surrendered to the police.

PNP chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa said the PNP Oversight Committee on Project Double Barrel held a conference-workshop in Camp Crame to assess the performance of all police commanders in the conduct of the program.

The committee will also validate drug offenders killed or arrested that are listed in the top 20 watchlist as well as local officials who are uncooperative with the campaign against illegal drugs; and budgetary requirements.

Dela Rosa said the PNP may recommend to the National Police Commission and the Department of the Interior and Local Government the suspension of deputation of uncooperative local officials in the anti-drugs campaign, or those who have failed to exercise their authority to lead the anti-drugs drive in their localities.

A ranking police official, however, said vigilantes have killed more suspected drug offenders than the police had neutralized in the massive anti-drug campaign.

Chief Supt. Dennis Siervo, chief of the PNP Human Rights Affairs Office, said vigilante groups account for many killings of drug offenders since 2014.

He added gunmen “riding in tandem” were the usual executioners.

More than 1,300 drug suspects have been killed nationwide after the PNP stepped up its anti-drug campaign last month.

Police said suspects had to be put down because they “resisted arrest and shot at police officers.”

Siervo, who spoke yesterday before the human rights workshop of the PNP region VIII, said the drug-related killings are being investigated by the PNP’s Internal Affairs Service.

Siervo also stressed the HRAO has no mandate to investigate drug-related killings but “to ensure that the investigation is correct.”

He also reported that complaints on violations of human rights against police officers dropped by 70 percent last year, compared to 2014.

From 142 police personnel facing complaints for alleged violation of human rights, the figure is now down to 22, Siervo said.

An official of PDP-Laban, the political party of President Duterte, said the increase in the killing of drug suspects could be part of a gang war.

“Salvaging and summary executions are like hitting two birds with a single shot, the crime groups purge their ranks and at the same time expose law enforcers to human rights violation controversies,” said Ben Ranque, secretary general of PDP-Laban.

Ranque raised the possibility that rival groups are behind many of the killings. – With Cecille Suerte Felipe, Gilbert Bayoran, Perseus Echeminada

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FROM THE INQUIRER

AFP grateful to Duterte’s ‘genuine concern’ for soldiers  By: Frances Mangosing
@FMangosingINQ INQUIRER.net 04:03 PM August 3rd, 2016


Pres Rodrigo Roa Duterte. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO/JOAN BONDOC

President Rodrigo Duterte’s recent pledge to a new hospital building and modern equipment at the Armed Forces of the Philippines Medical Center (AFPMC) was a manifestation of “his genuine concern on well-being of his soldiers,” the military said on Wednesday.

The AFP expressed its gratitude to the President, who visited the military hospital in Quezon City on Tuesday night.

During his visit to wounded soldiers, he promised P500 million for the new building and state-of-the-art equipment.

READ: Duterte sets aside P500M for soldiers’ new hospital

“We are very grateful for the Commander-in-Chief for this assistance. The AFP Medical Center that caters primarily to military personnel and their immediate dependents has improved significantly in the recent years. But a lot of improvements may still be done to ensure that the hospital is able to provide premiere medical attention to patients who deserve that kind of treatment,” AFP spokesperson Col. Edgard Arevalo said.

On his visit, the President also reiterated his promise to increase their salary this month.

Duterte’s visit to the AFPMC was the second military hospital he visited in two weeks. RAM


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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