Data privacy issues are hampering the full cooperation of the Philippine National Police and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency with the Department of Justice on the latter’s ongoing review of cases arising from the government’s drug war, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra said on Sunday.
Guevarra said the DOJ is having difficulty getting the full cooperation of the PNP and PDEA on the drug war review due to concerns on the Data Privacy Act.
According to the DOJ Secretary, the PNP and PDEA are having second thoughts about sharing information about drug operations with their inter-agency panel on the anti-drug campaign owing to possible liabilities under the data privacy law.
“Honestly, we are having problems because we cannot get the full cooperation of law enforcement agencies. Understandably because in the end, they might face complaints for sharing information,” Guevarra said in an interview over radio DZBB.
“Somehow, PDEA and PNP have concerns about the data privacy law. They are concerned that they may violate the data privacy law if they give out information,” he added.
However, Guevarra insisted the Data Privacy Commission has already approved the sharing of drug war records since it will be part of the “legitimate investigation” of the Department of Justice.
Besides data privacy issues, the Justice Secretary noted their drug war review slowed down due to the COVID-19 pandemic as they are having difficulty physically accessing records on drug operations.
Guevarra also said the DOJ’s inter-agency panel reviewing the controversial drug war is still coordinating with the PNP Internal Affairs Service to obtain 61 cases wherein law enforcement agents were found to have administrative/criminal liability.
PNP chief Police General Guillermo Eleazar earlier expressed willingness to share information on other drug war cases.