The incoming chief of the Department of Justice (DOJ), Vitaliano Aguirre 2nd, pledged to clean up the moribund bureaucracy by training the DOJ’s guns on plunderers, corrupt government officials and drug lords.
Aguirre has accepted the offer of President-elect Rodrigo Duterte for him to become the Secretary of Justice.
Aguirre has been a lawyer for more than 40 years. He was Duterte’s batchmate at San Beda College of Law in 1971 where he graduated as valedictorian.
Aguirre said that he will focus on plunder, corruption, graft, and drug charges.
On top of these, the problems at the New Bilibid Prisons that include prevalence of drug trafficking, entry of huge amounts of money and proliferation of various illegal activities are part of Aguirre’s mandate.
He noted that these issues and concerns are consistent with the target Duterte set to solve crime and corruption in the first six months of his presidency.
However, Aguirre gave assurances that the DOJ will conduct a thorough and deep investigation before filing appropriate charges against the persons involved.
He said the DOJ under his leadership will surely “spare no one” in going after plunderers, corrupt officials, and people involved in drug syndicates.
He admitted that he still needs to get specific instructions from Duterte since what he initially got from the incoming president were a set of guidelines on what to focus on at the DOJ.
Aguirre expressed confidence that he could do his job even in cases where he could possibly encounter high profile and influential personalities.
NELSON S. BADILLA