War on drugs: VP Leni Robredo targets zero killings

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Vice President Leni Robredo will target zero killings in the government’s war on drugs campaign after President Duterte has appointed her as co-chair of the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD).

Robredo expressed this desire a day before her scheduled briefing with the chair of ICAD and Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) Director General Aaron Aquino.

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“Wala sa plano natin ang pagpatay kasi wala iyon sa bounds ng rule of law. Iyon ‘yung ating directive,” said the Vice President.

(Killing is not in our plan because it is not within the bounds of the rule of law. That is our directive.)

“Mara­ming pagkakataon kasi iyong concentration ay nasa maliliit [na drug pushers]. Dapat mas maraming resources at oras para hanapin iyong mga malalaki. Yun ang aking directive. Pero iyong pagpatay, whether malaki o maliit, wala iyon sa usapan,” dagdag ni Robredo.

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(There are many opportunities because your concentration is in the small drug pushers. You need more resources and time to find the big ones. That’s my directive. But killing, whether big or small, it is not in the discussion.)

To date, according to the Philippine National Police’s official count, more than 5,700 suspects have been killed in the Duterte administration’s war on drugs. But critics say the death toll is expected to reach 20,000.

War on drugs: VP Leni Robredo targets zero killings

Robredo said the success of the anti-drugs campaign does not depend on the number of drug personalities killed.

“Papalitan natin iyong metrics. Hindi ito nasusukat sa dami ng pinatay. Ang metrics natin, dapat iyong numero ng mga napabuti natin ang buhay,” Robredo added.

(We will change the metrics. It is not measured by how many were killed. Our metrics should be the number lives improved.)

Robredo and Aquino will meet today at the Robredo’s office in Quezon City.

The Vice President also emphasized that the drug war will continue but following the law and human rights.

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