MANILA –Malacanang said on Wednesday that the reforms currently being implemented in the Philippine National Police (PNP) will eradicate the scalawags and criminals within the PNP.
“Reforms in the PNP will rid the force of rogue cops,” Presidential Spokesman Ernesto Abella said in a press statement.
Abella said the President’s directive to PNP chief Director General Ronald ‘Bato’ dela Rosa to abolish all anti-illegal drugs units in the PNP is proof of President Duterte’s “zero tolerance policy against corruption within the organization.”
Abella reiterated that extrajudicial deaths that marred the President’s war on drugs are not sanctioned by the government.
“This is also the conclusion of the Senate’s committees on justice and on public order and illegal drugs. Their joint investigation on deaths during police anti-drug operations shows there is no stated-sponsored policy of extrajudicial deaths,” Abella said.
“There is relentless effort on the part of the PNP to carry out the campaign properly and within legal processes,” he added.
In line with the President’s directive to abolish all PNP’s anti-drug units, Dela Rosa ordered also the suspension of the anti-drug Oplan Tokhang which is being used by rogue cops to pursue their own illegal activities.
As of January 31 this year, the government’s war on drugs has resulted in the surrender of 1.1 million drug personalities; 53,025 arrests and 2,555 neutralized drug pushers and users.
Earlier, Abella assured United Nations Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial Killings Agnes Callamard that President Duterte will not tolerate as he ordered a thorough investigation.
Callamard welcomed the suspension of Oplan Tokhang but said it must be coupled with an investigation of all the unlawful killings, accountability and reparation.
“On Callamard’s remarks that the government should look into unlawful deaths, the President has clear directives that extrajudicial killings must be thoroughly investigated according to established internal procedures; the results of which will be made public in due time,” Abella said.
“We acknowledge the statement of the UN Special Rapporteur Agnes Callamard. However, the war on drugs, as the President has said, continues until the last day of his administration,” he added.
Abella said the Duterte government “does not condone extrajudicial killings perpetrated by common criminals which have been wrongly attributed in some unvetted reports as part of police operations.”