Palace ensures ‘fair’ probe of Bulacan drug raids

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THE Palace has vowed to conduct an impartial investigation on the drug raid in Bulacan where 32 individuals suspected of involvement in illegal drugs were killed.

Presidential Spokesman Ernesto Abella issued the statement a day after President Rodrigo Duterte said the Bulacan raid was a great development.

“There will be a fair and impartial investigation on the recent series of anti-drug raid in Bulacan,” Abella said in a statement.

Likewise, Abella said that the anti-drug operation in Bulacan was not meant to kill as many people as possible.


“The Bulacan raids, we have to underscore, are not the result of a single action, but a wide ranging simultaneous police operations against illegal drug offenders conducted in the whole province of Bulacan,” Abella said.

“Local authorities were met with violent resistance as evidenced by the recovery of firearms, grenades and live ammunitions,” Abella said.

During the celebration of the 19th anniversary of the Volunteers Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) in the Palace on Wednesday, the President said the Bulacan raid was something that should be repeated.

“Those 32 killed in the massive raid in Bulacan…maganda iyon (that’s great). We should kill another 32 everyday, [then]maybe we can reduce what ails this country,” Duterte said.

Duterte also cited the deaths of Albuera City Mayor Roland Espinosa and Ozamiz City Mayor Reynaldo Parojinog whose alleged links to the drug trade have made them powerful in their respective bailiwicks.

Espinosa was killed in his cell in Baybay City, Leyte about 4 a.m. in November 2016; Parojinog, his wife Susan, and 13 others were killed by policemen in the mayor’s home on July 30 after they allegedly fired at the law enforcers who were trying to serve search warrants.

“The illegal drug trade takes a toll on the lives of the people, victims or criminals,” Duterte said.

The President also insisted that he did not make a false promise when he vowed to end the illegal drug trade in three to six months during his campaign in the May 2016 elections. He admitted, however, that he could not eradicate the problem during his six-year term.

“I said I could solve it, in an environment where I am a mayor like in Davao [City]. I didn’t know that the police, which is supposed to be on my side…little did I realize that the agency I was relying to was smuggling, importing drugs,” Duterte stressed.

 

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