AS tough as it may seem, President-elect Rodrigo Duterte’s campaign against crime and corruption, including the “humiliation” of police generals who are alleged to be into illegal drugs, should be in accordance with law, Malacañang said on Sunday.
In an interview over state-run Radyo ng Bayan, Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. conceded that it is well within Duterte’s prerogative on how he plans to fulfill his campaign promise to fight criminality but warned that in doing so the law must be upheld at all times.
“Anumang pagkilos laban sa katiwalian ay marapat pa ring tumalima sa tamang proseso alinsunod sa mga isinasaad ng batas [Any action against wrongdoing should comply with the appropriate process as the law dictates it],” Coloma said.
Regarding the incoming President’s pronouncements on cleansing the ranks of the Philippine National Police (PNP) leadership with his call for three alleged generals involved in illegal drugs to resign, the secretary said the move should be supported by the public.
“One of the most important pillars of the Aquino government is fighting corruption in all levels and agencies of government, including the national police,” Coloma added.
“Any step taken in pursuit of this goal should be supported,” he said.
Duterte made the warning against the three police generals on Saturday evening, telling them to immediately resign or face being humiliated once he names them in public.
The police generals are allegedly involved in the illegal drug trade.
”Corruption must stop. Itong pulis, itong pulis [The police] must stop… I will have to ask about three generals [in Camp]Crame to resign. And do not wait for me to name you in public because I will only humiliate you,” Duterte said.
The general headquarters of the PNP are located in Camp Crame in Quezon City
Duterte also vowed to review cases against police officers to determine who among them should be axed.
When asked to comment on Duterte’s war on crime and corruption, Coloma told The Manila Times that such should be expected from Duterte who won by virtue of his tough stance against crime and corruption.
“President-elect Duterte’s tough anti-crime stance may be viewed from his perspective and experience as a city mayor and former prosecutor. This is a part of the electoral promise that he made to the people and for which he was elected,” he pointed out.
Duterte, a lawyer, ceases to be mayor of Davao City in southern Philippines on June 30, when he takes his oath of office as President of the Philippines.
Before becoming first-time mayor of Davao City more than 20 years ago, he had been a prosecutor.