THE killing of drug suspects – whether legal or extralegal – may be a popular solution but will never be the correct way to deal with criminality, a lay official of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) said on Tuesday.
Rodolfo Diamante, executive secretary of the CBCP Episcopal Commission on Prison Pastoral Care, added that killing those who had committed crimes may be “an effective tool in politicking,” but would be a “travesty.”
Diamante said “astute politicians will carry the cause of death for the convicted not because they believe in it as an appropriate national policy, but because it is a popular cause.”
“And yet the popular is not necessarily correct,” he pointed out.
Records of the Philippine National Police (PNP) showed that more than 1,500 drug dealers have been killed in anti-drug operations since July 1. On top of this figure, about 2,000 more have been killed by unidentified assailants.
In Caloocan City, a big number of drug dealers have been shot to death by gunmen wearing bonnets. On Friday, seven drug dealers were killed by bonnet-wearing men.
Caloocan police chief Supt. Johnny Almazan told reporters that he had ordered an investigation of the incident.
Diamante said Duterte and his allies in Congress should not give “false hope” to the public in pushing death penalty as a punishment for criminals, because it won’t solve the crime problem.
“As Christians, we are called to uphold and proclaim a set of moral principles and social teachings at the heart of which is the knowledge that the human person is central, the clearest reflection of God among us,” he added.
“Human life is inherently precious and those who commit crimes do not give up their human dignity,” Diamante said.