PNP chief: No ‘war’ on drugs but operations to clear barangays of narcotics continues

PNP chief: No ‘war’ on drugs but operations to clear barangays of narcotics continues
Photo from PNP

NEWLY appointed chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP) General Rommel Francisco Marbil said on Wednesday, April 3, 2024, that he does not see the need for the national police agency to declare a “war” against illegal drugs under his leadership.

In a press conference, Marbil said the PNP will remain all out against illegal drugs, eyeing a 100 percent drug-less community, which is among the priority of the PNP ever since.

“Wala po kaming giyera dito. It’s more of talaga na papaano natin mapapababa ‘yung crimes natin based doon sa mga parameters natin. I don’t want to say na may drug war, parang giyera na naman kami,” he said.

(We don't have a war here. It's more of how can we lower our crimes based on our parameters. I don't want to say that there is a drug war, it's like we are at war again.)

“Ito lang talaga ‘yung requirement; ito yung dapat maisolve mo (This is really the only requirement; this is what you must solve). We go for 100 percent drug less community,” he added.

Marbil said that under his leadership, anti-illegal drug policies depend on the situation of a certain jurisdiction.

“Ano ba talaga yung nangyayari sa ground. Let’s say from region, ano ba meron doon sa region natin na very particular. It will be not kagaya ng general. Dati kasi general na dapat may huli kayo, paramihan kayo ng huli. Hindi na po paramihan ng huli ngayon ang PNP. It’s more of kung ano talaga ang meron sa inyo,” he said.

(What is really happening on the ground? Let's say from the region, what is there in our region that is very particular. It will not be like the general. It used to be the general rule that you should have a catch, multiply your catch. The PNP will not increase the catch now. It's more of what you really have.)

“Ang gusto namin is…hindi ‘yung paramihan kasi napipilitan ka eh. Sige magparamihan tayo ng huli pero you don’t solve the problem hindi ba. Ngayon, ilan ‘yung drugs na umiikot sa iyo, kung 10 kilos then 10 kilos huhulihin mo,” he added.

Last week, Davao City Mayor Baste Duterte declared a war against illegal drugs, ordering the police to cleanse all barangays of the illegal drug problem.

In response, Marbil said he reiterated accountability and transparency on the part of policemen during anti-illegal drugs operations.

Following Duterte’s declaration, eight police officers in the city were relieved from their duties due to their involvement in anti-drug operations that resulted in the deaths of seven drug suspects.

Davao Region Police Director Brigadier General Alden Delvo said investigation on the matter is still ongoing as he assured impartiality and transparency.

“Well, we will leave no stone unturned in investigating because we don’t want that our personnel will be violating any procedures in our police operational procedures and of course violations of human rights,” he said.

“Very unusual if every operation nanlaban ‘yung suspects but it is not impossible that is why we are investigating it,” he added.

The Philippines “drug war” made noise during the presidency of former President Rodrigo Duterte, resulting in the death of thousands of alleged drug personalities. (TPM/SunStar Philippines)


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