PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte has again threatened to kill drug smugglers, saying he would not care about human rights groups and other critics of his crackdown on illegal drugs.
In a speech during the inauguration of a shopping complex in Davao City Duterte said the government had completely wiped out domestic drug laboratories, and that drugs that remained in circulation nationwide were only those which were imported from the so-called Bamboo Triad in Southeast Asia and from Mexico.
“You druggists, especially those importers, I will certainly kill you. I told you before, do not destroy my country,” Duterte said.
On why most of those killed in his administration’s war on drugs belonged to the poor, the 73-year-old Chief Executive explained it is because crystal meth or shabu is basically the drug of choice of poor people, who also comprise the majority of addicts in the country.
“If you’re into drugs, I’ll really kill you. Human rights? I don’t give a sh–,” Duterte said. “If we don’t have law and order in this country, we would be going nowhere.”
Human rights groups said Duterte’s drug war has already claimed the lives of thousands of mostly poor individuals.
While believing in the administration’s anti-drug campaign, Senate President Vicente “Tito” Sotto III said it is still not enough to curtail the drug problem in the country.
Sotto explained that while the government’s law enforcers are exerting all efforts to get rid of illegal drugs, the prosecution aspect in the courts is lagging behind.
“Hindi kumpleto ang enforcement pag mahina ang prosecution,” Sotto said in an interview with DWIZ radio.
Aside from enforcement and prosecution, Sotto insisted that the government must also give attention to the prevention and rehabilitation aspect in fighting the menace of illegal drugs.
“Dapat madiin sa prevention, yung 12 o 13 yrs old dapat edukado na sa droga. Dapat tinuturuan na tungkol sa kasamaan ng droga. Tapos meron ding prevention program sa magulang para maagang madetect pag naprevent mo ang 12 o 13 year old na hindi mahook,” he explained.
“Pangalawa, rehabilitation. Addict ba kamo eh ‘di rehab, pero dapat iprofile mo kung ano ang dapat sa kanya. Palakasin natin ang rehabilitation,” Sotto added.
Sotto vowed that in the budget deliberations in the Senate, he will urge the Department of Health, Department of Education and Dangerous Drugs Board to strengthen their drug prevention programs to save the youth from addiction.
With Marlon Purificacion