Hell awaits those involved in spreading illegal drugs which eventually destroy people in the communities, President Rodrigo Duterte has warned.
The warning, in so many words, was issued while Duterte was on a five-day state visit to Russia before returning home today to gear up again on his administration’s drive against illegal substances, a campaign he launched as soon as he took his presidential oath in 2016.
In a statement, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the President’s unyielding posture against illegal drugs and those who destroy the country, regardless of whether they belong to the government, by spreading these substances in our communities, “will not waver.”
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“With regard to President Duterte’s remarks during the Valdai Forum where he disclosed that there are two generals who are still involved in the illegal drug industry, he refers to the PNP generals who have been accused
to have protected the ninja cops,” the Palace spokesperson said without naming names.
PNP chief Gen. Oscar Albayalde is being probed by the Senate
on “ninja cops” or police officers involved in the illegal drug trade.
The existence of “ninja cops” or police officers who recycle and resell illegal drugs seized or confiscated during anti-drug operations, was exposed by Baguio City Mayor Benjamin Magalong, a former PNP-Criminal Investigation and Detection Group chief.
Magalong revealed that corrupt police officers who recycle seized drugs, a racket known as “agaw bato
,” do business with convicted drug lords locked up at the New Bilibid Prison.
Magalong alleged that 200 kilos of shabu were seized that time, but operatives declared that only about 38 kilos were confiscated.
READ: Duterte: Investigate Albayalde
Albayalde on Saturday cast doubt on speculation he was one of two unnamed “generals”—from a total nine—who Duterte linked to the narcotics trade.
Albayalde said Duterte continued to trust him, Panelo announced Friday night.
Speaking at a forum in Sochi, Russia, on Thursday, Duterte said two Filipino generals were “still playing with drugs” but did not say what their service was.
Albayalde was chief of the Pampanga police when 13 of his subordinates were accused of pilfering 160 kilos of shabu in an operation against a suspected Chinese drug lord.
Magalong, now mayor of Baguio City, in a recent Senate hearing accused Albayalde of seeking to defer the dismissal order against the Pampanga officers, which the latter denied.
The PNP chief, who will retire on Nov. 8, said the allegations against him were meant to “discredit” whoever he would recommend as his successor.
Albalyalde was allegedly able to acquire a sports utility vehicle after his former subordinates in Pampanga reportedly conducted an irregular anti-drug raid in 2013.
READ: 2 ‘generals’ out of 9 tagged in illegal drug trade still at it
“If it comes to a serious thing as dismissing a top official here and there, it has to be for a good reason and there must be enough proof,” Panelo said.
Meanwhile, the Palace said Duterte would let Congress conclude its investigation into ninja cops, before taking any action.
“The President, however, will let Congress do and finish its investigation in aid of legislation before taking any formal action on the issue of these ninja cops,” Panelo said.
“When I took over, I found out about nine generals were involved in the trafficking of drugs,” Duterte told the forum, adding “the two generals continued to benefit from the illegal drug trade.”
Duterte said he had been engaged in many fights since he became president, so he had to quickly do something about the problem with illegal drugs.
“I said I’m not only fighting corruption from the inside of government. I was fighting corrupt—corruption and the trafficking of drugs even in my government. And that is why I had to do something very fast,” he said.
“He will wait for the recommendation of the DILG [Department of the Interior and Local Government] secretary when he is finished with his internal investigation,” he said.
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