LA TRINIDAD, Benguet – Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief, Director General Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa, stressed that the police force values the lives of drug suspects.
This amidst the latest Social Weather Station (SWS) survey that shows that nine out of 10 or 90 percent of respondents want drug suspects to be arrested alive.
“Kung sa kanila 90 percent sa amin gusto naming na 100 percent na buhay ang mga suspects,” Dela Rosa said during his visit as guest of the 116th Police Service Anniversary at the Police Regional Office – Cordillera here last week.
He said drug suspects should surrender to the police officers and not risk their lives by engaging them into fire fight. “Basta huwag lang silang manlaban kasi mapipilitan kami to defend ourselves,” he added.
Dela Rosa also stressed that the police force as well as the government have no policy of killing suspects particularly drug- related individuals. “Hindi po talaga naming polisiya na pumatay ng drug suspects, nagkataon lang na lumaban and we have to defend ourselves,” the police chief said.
“What’s the use of waging this war on drugs if you don’t value life? Gusto naming talaga buhay lahat ng suspects kasi we really do value life, what is the use of the war on drugs if we don’t value life,” he said.
PNP reports indicate that in the 71,393 drug operations conducted from 01 July 2016 to 30 September 2017, about 109,090 drug offenders are alive and are now facing criminal charges.
PNP’s Oplan Tokhang also conducted 8,794,120 house visitations nationwide that resulted to 1,260,196 drug personalities who voluntarily surrendered to the authorities and accorded the opportunity to change and given assistance.
Meanwhile, Dela Rosa commended the PRO-Cor for the declaration of three drug-cleared provinces in the Cordillera region namely Apayao, Ifugao and Mountain Province.
“The PNP in the Cordillera has a very good performance. They are able to clear three provinces. Mahirap gawin yan lalo na sa sitwasyon natin ngayon na 78 percent of the barangays in the country are drug-affected so if you could clear three provinces that is good enough compared to other regions,” he said.
In the same occasion, Dela Rosa was adopted as a son of the Cordilleras and given the name “Mulingan”, meaning the strongest stone in the region. (JDP/ RMC- PIA CAR)