"I wish there were something to make the apparent curse disappear."
First off, President Duterte’s war against illegal drugs has been the only serious campaign of such nature that the government waged since Lim Seng’s death by firing squad when Martial Law began in 1972.
That’s why Duterte’s drugs war has accomplished what no administration in the post-Marcos era had achieved in terms of drugs personalities killed, illegal drugs seized, and the extent it has disrupted syndicated drugs operations.
Over four years, the Philippine Drugs Enforcement Agency (PDEA) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) have neutralized thousands of drug traffickers and confiscated billions of peso worth of crystal meth or shabu, and other drugs.
Unfortunately, the administration cannot hope to rest on its laurels as the anti-illegal drugs drive itself is beset by corruption, incompetence and lack of professionalism among the members of the PNP and other law enforcement agencies.
The anti-crime efforts, as well as its vaunted anti-illegal drugs drive, have been undermined by these internal problems inherited from the complacent administrations.
Last Wednesday’s shootout between the operatives of PDEA and the Quezon City Police District (QCPD) is a glaring example of a problematic drugs operation that left at least two policemen dead and several others wounded.
Both camps have been ordered to deter from making public statements pending joint investigation by the National Capital Regional Police Office (NCRPO) under P/Maj. Gen. Vicente Danao and the Criminal Investigation Detection Group (CIDG).
There was no immediate indication of what actually transpired in the alleged “buy-bust” or entrapment operation in which QCPD poseur buyers transacted with PDEA agents disguised as drug sellers.
In other words, both groups posed as drug traffickers.
PDEA agents insisted they properly “coordinated” their operation with the proper QCPD office.
The QCPD Special Operations Unit involved in what Danao immediately described as “misencounter” said officials were aware of the entrapment.
What triggered the shooting, allegedly coming from PDEA’s side, was not clear until the time of this writing.
Sought for his comment, former PDEA director-general Dionisio Santiago said miscommunication and short tempers may have been a factor in that type of transaction.
Obviously, you’re dealing with a party you distrust and intend to take down.
So, what seems to be a curse on the PNP continues with over a year left of the Duterte administration’s term.
The President has denounced scalawag cops who have never ceased to blacken the PNP’s image since the beginning of his term.
Jee Ick-Joo, a Korean businessman, was kidnapped by two policemen in October 2016 and was found murdered inside Camp Crame, the PNP headquarters.
A number of cops have been involved in other kidnap and rape-slay cases.
The ninja cops led to the early retirement of former PNP chief Gen. Oscar Albayalde in 2019.
At least nine policemen are now at large facing murder charges for the massacre of four soldiers in Jolo, Sulu.
A psychotic policeman, P/SMS Jonel Nuezca, shocked the world when he shot dead his neighbor, a mother and son, point blank; his own daughter was at the scene with him.
On New Year’s Day, PNP medico-legal bungled the autopsy of Christine Dacera, alleged victim of rape-slay, and declared her death as one of natural causes.
Apparently, PNP Chief Debold Sinas has his hands full within two and half months, if I’m not mistaken. He retires this coming May 8, one year before the May 2022 national elections.
We wish there’s a vaccine to dispel the curse on the PNP and that there will be no cover-up or whitewash on the PDEA-QCPD encounter.