Friday , June 22, 2018

Cebu officials: Sack Aguirre, chase big-time drug peddlers

AT least two local officials expressed dismay at a justice department task force’s resolution to drop criminal complaints against Cebu-based businessman Peter Lim and Rolando “Kerwin” Espinosa Jr.

It should be a reminder to the authorities to go after big-time drug sellers, said Carmen Remedios Durano-Meca, who heads the Cebu Provincial Anti-Drug Abuse Office.

It ought to be enough for President Rodrigo Duterte to dismiss Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre, said Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña in a separate interview.

Palace and police officials emphasized that the justice secretary will still review the resolution and will have the option to send the case to court for trial.

“Aguirre is very liberal. He likes to forgive everybody. I think he is just going to bring down the reputation of this administration. He is doing a disservice to the administration,” Osmeña said.

He added he is no longer surprised by the development.

Durano-Meca, for her part, said the dismissal of the case was baffling and that law enforcers should focus on big-time drug sellers to cut the supply of drugs being sold on the streets.

“Daghan man gyud kahibaw sa ilang duwa, samot na si Espinosa (So many know about their dealings, particularly Espinosa),” Meca said.

She was disappointed that high-profile drug suspects were able to escape prosecution while law enforcers go after low-level drug sellers. “It should be the pushers and sellers who should be in jail. Users are merely victims,” Meca added.

Lim has welcomed the resolution, saying there was never any proof behind Marcelo Adorco’s allegation that he supplied illegal drugs to Espinosa. (RVC, JKV)