Hours after President Rodrigo Duterte urged him to surrender, Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. of Albuera, Leyte, who is suspected to be involved in the illegal drug trade, turned himself in, Malacañang said on Tuesday.
Presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella said Espinosa surrendered to Philippine National Police chief Ronald “Bato” de la Rosa.
The mayor’s son, Kerwin, remains at large.
The President on Monday warned the mayor and his son to surrender within 24 hours or risk being shot.
The mayor and his son were accused of drug trafficking and coddling drug dealers.
Some employees of Espinosa were arrested during a buy-bust operation. Policemen seized from them P1.9 million worth of shabu.
De la Rosa presented Espinosa to the media on Tuesday. The mayor was not detained because he is not facing any charges.
The PNP chief said Espinosa was accompanied by a lawyer and a prosecutor when he went to Camp Crame, the national police headquarters in Quezon City.
“He was here from 4 a.m. until 7 a.m. They were here since yesterday and surrendered to us,” de la Rosa told reporters.
Espinosa admitted that Kerwin was involved in illegal drugs. He promised de la Rosa that he will help in the government’s anti-drug campaign.
The promise seemed to appease the PNP chief.
“I am giving you effective today two months in solving the problem of illegal drugs in your hometown,” de la Rosa said.
He said the order for authorities to shoot Kerwin on sight remains.
“Kerwin, if you’re in the Philippines, you better surrender or die,” Dela Rosa said.