Dela Rosa said PNP cannot guarantee "bloodless" anti-drug operations
Philippine National Police (PNP) Director General Ronald Dela Rosa said he cannot guarantee a bloodless war on drugs as the PNP formally resumed it on Monday.
“On the way of addressing this problem, we also have to protect ourselves, preserve our own life and
life of the stranger. That's why I cannot give you 100 percent or foolproof anti-drug campaign that it will be going to be bloodless,” he said.
“Give the name of a commander that can do that and I am willing to give up my post if you can say that there is a commander who can be successful on anti-drug (war) without fatality. That's impossible,” he added.
Dela Rosa assured the PNP will do its best to avoid casualties during anti-illegal drug operations.
“We are just giving you the assurance that we will do everything to make our anti-drug
campaign less bloody because we are not dealing with people who are in right mind,” he said.
“Let us make this clear, our tokhangers that will knock (on) houses are armed with short firearms for self defense but on their back there are long firearms for their security (because) what if after they knock a grenade was thrown to them? There are cases like this… a lot of policemen were also killed but rest assured that we will not be the one to start the bloodletting ceremonies,” Dela Rosa added.
Dela Rosa said as part of their effort to show their transparency, the PNP is inviting media, human rights group and religious representative to witness their anti-illegal drug operations.
“Even before we are inviting media even priest because we want our anti-drug operations either Oplan
Tokhang or Oplan High Value Target to be credible, if you want to come we are wiling to accommodate you for you to see that we really do not have an intention to kill indiscriminately,” he said.
During the celebration of the 27th founding anniversary of the PNP, Dela Rosa formally announces the resumption of anti-illegal drug operation.
“This is actually a doubly significant occasion because this anniversary coincides with the resumption of our lefthand effort in the national anti-drug campaign. According to the letter and intent of Presidential Memorandum Order No. 17, the PNP reassumes the crucial role in the government’s anti-drug campaign in support of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency,” he said.
“Project Double Barrel, with all the notable accomplishments under its name, is back in business-- including the Oplan Tokhang (knock and plead) operations that has so far yielded more than 1.3-million drug personalities who chose to voluntarily turn back from a life of drugs to a life of hope,” he said.
It can be recalled that President Rodrigo Duterte ordered the PNP to stop its anti-illegal drug campaign after the series of human rights violations reportedly committed by policemen during their operation in previous year.
As part of their effort to clean their ranks of rogue cops, Dela Rosa emphasized he has dismissed a total of 352 policemen.
“Since I assumed as chief PNP I have already dismissed 352 policemen for various offenses, 167 of them are drug-related, 185 others, (includes) kidnapping, murder, extortion, various offenses,” he said.
“We also have 329 pending for various offenses, which are under investigation, pending meaning either the investigation was already completed, waiting for my signature or there is still an ongoing investigation,” he added.
Dela Rosa added that based on his recollection the 352 and 329 includes policemen with the rank of senior superintendent. Robina Asido/DMS