• Bilibid drug trade puzzles Duterte


    President Rodrigo Duterte reiterated his administration’s support to the all-out campaign against illegal drugs following the resurgence of the drug trade at the New Bilibid Prison (NBP).

    HAIL TO THE CHIEF President Rodrigo Duterte returns the salute of his troops upon his arrival at Camp Aguinaldo to attend the 26th anniversary celebration of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology. PHOTO BY RENE H. DILAN

    In his speech at the anniversary of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology on Wednesday, Duterte admitted that he was puzzled why the drug trade at the NBP again flourished, months after the illicit selling of illegal drugs took the spotlight.

    “Kaya diyan sa Bilibid, maski ano ang gawin natin, pasok nang pasok pa rin ang mga—and because ang droga bumalik na naman (No matter what we do, the drug trade continues) allegedly about 400 kilos. That’s the reason for that shootout with—somebody died there in Muntinlupa because of this,” the President said as he held up a mobile phone.

    “Ito lang kasi ang kapital and I have to be frank mostly Chinese, ‘pag nakapasok ang cellphone diyan, negosyo talaga. Negosyo iyan. At hanggang ngayon, namatay na iyong iba, nabuhay, at bakit malakas na naman ang droga (This is the capital. If a cellphone is smuggled inside, business continues. It’s a business. Some have died, but the drug trade has flourished again)” he added.

    Duterte had previously blamed Sen. Leila de Lima, his fierce critic, for the proliferation of the drug trade inside the penitentiary.

    She is currently detained on drug charges, but Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre 2nd himself confirmed the
    narcotics trade is back in the NBP.

    Duterte said some inmates of a prison in Davao del Norte are also involved in the illegal drug trade.

    “Would you believe it? Sa tracking namin, pati Davao Penal Colony, may tatlo doong putris ka—nagnenegosyo. Sabagay, patay na (Even at the Davao Penal Colony, there are three inmates there who are in the business. Anyway, they’re dead),” he said.

    Davao Penal Colony is the former name of the Davao Prison and Penal Farm.

    The NBP and the Davao Penal Farm are run by the Bureau of Corrections, an agency under the Department of Justice.
    The President urged jail officials to curb the source of drugs by imposing stiffer inspections and sanctions against inmates who engage in drug transactions behind bars.

    “’Wag ka maniwala sa human rights, ‘wag ka maniwala na bawal ang bartolina. Gusto magsosyalan? Kaya mo nga kinulong yan eh. You just need to cut them off from the rest,” he added.



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