Mayors deny involvement in illegal drug trade

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MAYORS accused by President Rodrigo Duterte of involvement in the illegal drug trade issued a flurry of denials on Sunday, with politicians on the President’s list turning up at the police headquarters in Camp Crame to clear their names.

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Mayor Dante Garcia of Tubao, La Union, one of four alleged “narco-politicians” from La Union, denied Duterte’s charge and said he even supported the President’s election campaign.

“I was never involved in any use of illegal drugs, selling, or protecting anyone [in]this illegal activity. I maybe suspected of coddling because the No. 3 person, Salvador Marzan alias Amang, in the regional drug watch list is from my town,” Garcia said.

Garcia, who went to Camp Crame, said he even wrote the National Bureau Investigation (NBI) to conduct an operation against Amang.

“He (Amang) was indeed raided by NBI and CIDG (Criminal Investigation and Detection Group) from Manila but he was able to evade detention because there are influential persons allegedly protecting him,” he said.

Garcia said he had been earning a living from a construction company and other “legal businesses.”

Aside from Garcia, Duterte also named Mayor Martin de Guzman of Bauang town, Mayor Reynaldo Flores of Naguilian town and former representative Eufranio Eriguel as among narco-politicians in La Union.

De Guzman, Flores and Eriguel declined to give statements to The Manila Times.

Mayor Cipriano “Goto” Violago of San Rafael, Bulacan and former Surigao del Sur mayor Rasmiya Macabagos also went to Camp Crame in Quezon City explain their side.

Violago, in a radio interview, denied allegations that he was involved in illegal drugs.

“I myself have been fighting drugs in our town. I gave financial assistance to our police such as cash rewards and incentives to make our municipality’s campaign against drugs effective,” he said.

Violago added that during his term, a total of 109 drug pushers and users were arrested and charged for violations of the Dangerous Drugs Act.

Lasam, Cagayan town mayor Marjorie Salazar was very emotional upon learning that her name was on Duterte’s list, and planned to meet the President on Monday.

Reymar Desiderio, Salazar’s assistant, said the mayor cried before village chairmen who came to see her to show their support.

Desiderio said the mayor denied involvement in the illegal drug trade and went to the Police Regional Office 2 in Tuguegarao, Cagayan at 11 a.m. Sunday to clear her name.

“This has something to do with politics,” Desiderio said.

Mayor Rolando Espinosa of Albuera, Leyte, was the first to surrender to the Philippine National Police chief, Director General Ronald de la Rosa.

Last Friday, Maguing Mayor Mamaulan Abinal Molok, former Mayor Mohammadali Abinal of Marantao, Lanao del Sur and Mayor Rasul Sangki of Ampatuan, Maguindanao surrendered to the CIDG to give their statements.

WILLIAM JUN GARCIA, FREDERICK SILVERIO AND LEANDER C. DOMINGO AND PNA

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7 Comments

  1. I hope these people will get what they disserve,they should step down from their politics posession because they are not helping their own bayan.They are very selfish and corrupt.Naguilian peoples are suffering specialy those poor ones.Have the guts to admit your involvement and step down as mayor please.saan ka ba naman nakakita ng mayor na every time lumalabas ay sampo ang body guard nya ? Where you get the money to pay them?

    nvolvement

  2. I hope these people will get what they disserve,they should step down from their politics posession because they are not helping their own bayan.They are very selfish and corrupt.Naguilian peoples are suffering specialy those poor ones.Have the guts to admit your involvement and step down as mayor please.saan ka ba naman nakakita ng mayor na every time lumalabas ay sampo ang body guard nya ? Where you get the money to pay them?

    nvolvement

  3. investigateDante on

    but Dante Garcia your destroying our town with illegal pig farms and destroying the river selling sand and gravel thats even worst than being a drug lord. I hope duterte does investigate you… he even destroyed houses so his trucks can move more dirt from the river he is destroying and illegaly mining but no one dares to speak out since he would have you killed if you say so.

  4. Mabait na Pinoy on

    This has nothing to do with politics, and was purely done on intelligence gathering techniques. These folks probably don’t even realized the evidence gathered against them are very strong and eventually, those evidences will surfaced and embarrassed them. What PDU30 should have done was have few of these suspects shot and killed first before releasing the names publicly.

  5. I hope these mayors will not end up having an overnight stay in the Whitehouse courtesy of General Bato!

  6. What do you expect from these people? Obviously, no one will admit that they are involved in illegal drugs. But the fact remains that their names show up on verified and revalidated intelligence report coming form no less that the president is 99% truth. And it is common sense that drugs will not proliferate in our country without the blessings and protection of those in power (Police,Mayors & Judges)

  7. In dictatorship the first thing to do is to instill fear and this is exactly what Duterte is doing. Nothing more, nothing less. He go after small time drug dealers, and the users. The question he is eluding is can he stand up to China who has not only invaded Philippine sovereign territiries, but is also the primary country responsible for the drugs in the Philippines. Duterte promised to jump on a jet ski and travel to the scoals which China claims as theirs. Well, Mr. Duterte the world is waiting.