PNP transfers ‘tokhang’ numbers to PDEA

By , on May 22, 2017

Military spokesman Col. Edgard Arevalo said that troops would only back up the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, or PDEA, which has a tiny force, in assaults against major drug suspects and in raids in far-flung areas facing insurgency and terrorism threats under the new agreement. (Photo: PDEA Cares/ Facebook)
(Photo: PDEA Cares/ Facebook)

In order to provide clarity and prove the consistency of the agencies tasked with the Duterte Administration’s war against illegal drugs, the Philippine National Police had turned over the task of releasing statistics of people involved in the anti-drug campaign to the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA).

As covered by Executive Order 15 which created the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD), the PDEA is allowed to take the job or releasing the official numbers of people who surrendered, killed and arrested in the anti-drug campaign.

According to PNP Human Rights Affairs Office Director Chief Superintendent Dennis Siervo, they had to create the transfer due to the inconsistency of the numbers related to the drug war which had placed the placed the country under international scrutiny and criticism.

The PNP had confirmed that from July 2016 to March 2017, 9,432 people had been killed and the majority were labeled as homicide cases. However, during the #RealNumbersPH forum by the Presidential Communications Operations Office earlier this month, the PNP reported a total of 5,691 people who had been killed and are currently labeled as deaths under inquiry (DUI).

The report also indicated that only 19 percent or 1,847 incidents were related to the anti-illegal drugs campaign headed by the PNP while citing that other drug-related deaths were attributed to vigilante killings.

When asked about the inconsistency of the numbers, PNP Directorate for Operations Dir. Camilo Cascolan said that the PNP is still investigating all incidents including DUIs while PNP Directorate for Investigation and Detective Management Dir. Augusto Marquez stated that all incidents are currently being reported to the national headquarters via the internet.

As of the moment, it would be up to the PDEA to release a finalized report on the actual statistics of the people involved in the drug war while other agencies such as the Commission on Human Rights and the PNP will resume their own investigations.