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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Battle lines drawn: Digong dares PBBM to take drug test with him

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The battle lines appeared to have been drawn as former president Rodrigo Duterte dared President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. to undergo a drug test in public to prove that he is not a drug user.

Duterte tossed the challenge during a press conference in Davao City where he said he too, would undergo a blood test at the Luneta Park in Manila to be supervised by an independent doctor, GMA News reported.

It may be recalled that Marcos ran for the presidency under the Uniteam Alliance banner with then Davao City Mayor-now Vice President and concurrent Education Secretary Sara Duterte, daughter of the former president.

Duterte also said a Cabinet official allegedly uses cocaine along with Marcos, and insisted that the President was on the watchlist of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency. PDEA however, belied the allegation.

The former president also dared his successor to explained why he purportedly underwent rehabilitation in Germany prior to the onset of the campaign for the 2022 elections.

Duterte, who was at the center of the bloody anti-drug war during his administration, said he would publicize the PDEA list containing Marcos’s name if he could get hold of it.

Duterte raised the challenge after Speaker Martin Romualdez, an uncle of the President, dared him to substantiate his allegation that Mr. Marcos was a drug user.

The erstwhile leader, during a prayer rally in Davao City, also reportedly described the sitting Chief Executive as “bangag,” a Filipino colloquial for a person high on drugs, and even accused him of being a drug addict.

Duterte likewise charged that the Marcos administration was waging a campaign to amend the Constitution to “perpetuate themselves in power.”

The President however, merely laughed off the charges, saying it could be the effect of fentanyl, a drug his predecessor admitted to taking during his watch at Malacanang.

“It is highly addictive and it has very serious side effects,” Marcos was quoted as saying of fentanyl.

The United States Drug Enforcement Administration described fentanyl is a potent synthetic opioid used as a pain reliever and anesthetic.

Senator Ronald Dela Rosa, reputedly a strong ally of Duterte, tried to dissociate himself from the brewing row between Marcos and his former boss.

Dela Rosa who was Philippine National Police (PNP) chief during the Duterte administration, denied any knowledge or having seen the PDEA list mentioned by Duterte. He also served as Davao City police chief during Duterte’s stint as mayor.

“I don’t know anything about it. Ask PDEA and not… you said PDEA list. then ask them  and not the  PNP, “ Dela Rosa told reporters.

“I have nothing to do with other persons in other places,” he added.

“My concern is only Davao City  so I don’t  know about it. “I have no idea, the senator stressed.

Dela Rosa said that during his entire stint as the country’s PNP chief, he never saw Mr. Marcos’ name in any list of personalities involved in the illegal drug trade.

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