SEN. Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go has challenged Vice President Maria Leonor “Leni” Robredo to accept President Rodrigo Duterte’s’s offer to lead the anti-drug war for six months.
“Hinahamon ko si Vice President Leni Robredo. Tanggapin niyo po. Subukan niyo po. Malay mo kayanin mo ng six months. Tingnan natin, ngayon makikita mo ang trabaho ng isang presidente (I am challenging Vice President Leni Robredo. Accept it, Ma’am. Give it a try.
Maybe you can solve it [the country’s drug problem] in six months. We will see, now you given the chance to see the job of a president),” said Go in a statement.
The senator said he and the President remain firm in their fight against criminality, illegal drugs and corruption.
“Basta kami ni Pangulong Duterte, tuloy ang kampanya namin laban sa ilegal na droga, korupsyon at kriminalidad. Kami hanggang sa dulo, hanggang sa huling araw ng aming termino, gagawin namin lahat para sa kabutihan ng mga Pilipino (President Duterte and I will continue the campaign against illegal drugs, corruption and criminality. We are committed until the end, to the last day of our terms, we will do everything for the good of the Filipinos),” he added.
President Duterte on Monday offered to make Robredo his drug czar for six months given her repeated criticisms.
Robredo has declined to comment on Duterte’s offer, saying she was unsure whether he was serious.
Also on Monday, Senate President Vicente Sotto 3rd recommended the appointment of Robredo as chairman of the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB).
“If it’s a serious proposal, it’s best if the VP is appointed as DDB chair and concurrent Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency director general,” Sotto told reporters.
Sen. Aquilino Pimentel 3rd on Tuesday objected to President Duterte’s proposal to let Robredo serve as drug czar for six months to address the illegal drug trade.
Pimentel, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said the President “is the Chief Executive.”
“He (President Duterte) executes the laws. That cannot be delegated except to his alter egos,” the senator said.
Sen. Ronald dela Rosa, who previously led the drug war and Operation Tokhang as chief of the Philippine National Police, said he does not want the Philippines to become another Mexico.
“So, President Duterte should tighten his grip on the drug situation instead of leasing his power to anybody who has no proven track record in crime-fighting, especially in the arena of drugs,” he said.
Opposition Sen. Ana Theresia Hontiveros said the President should terminate his last three years in office and leave Malacañang to allow Robredo to solve the drug problem, but not in six months.
It was only President Duterte who vowed to eliminate the illegal drugs problem in six months during the last political campaign leading to the May 2016 national elections, she said.
The vice president last week said Duterte should “assess and tweak” his war on drugs that had killed thousands because more and more people were still becoming hooked on drugs.
Duterte promised during his campaign in 2016 to end the illegal drug problem in six months.
Majority of Filipinos remained satisfied with Duterte’s deadly war on drugs that has killed thousands, despite worldwide criticism, according to a Social Weather Stations poll in September.