Protecting human rights

June 29, 2019

IT is certainly reassuring to note that the leadership of the Philippine National Police (PNP) is committed to protect human rights (HRs) while pursuing the government’s total war against illegal drugs.

This, we think, monuments the determination of the men and women in police uniform to hit hard at those involved in the highly-profitable but illegal drug business without resorting to illegal means.

“As an institution, let this be known to all, that we (policemen) adhere to the rule of law, respect human rights, and value life,” according to Col. Bernard M. Banac, the highly-articulate PNP spokesman.

Of course, we also share the view of Colonel Banac that as any other organization, public and private, the country’s 175,000-strong premier law enforcement agency is not perfect.

Since July 1, 2016, some 6,600 armed drug offenders have been killed in shootouts with police operatives. During the period, the PNP also nabbed 240,000 known drug personalities.

And the PNP leadership, headed by Director-General Oscar “Odie” D. Albayalde, continues to intensify its internal cleansing program by weeding out rogues, misfits and other scalawags.

Aside from enforcing the country’s laws, the police agency, which is civilian in nature but national in scope, also plays a crucial role in rehabilitating drug dependents with transparency.

But the crusading Duterte administration, which ends at 12 noon on June 30, 2022, needs the all-out support of the people, including the ordinary citizens, if we are to win the war on illegal drugs.

Kung hindi ay baka lalong magka-windang-windang ang ating bansa dahil ibang kalaban ang “drug monster.”