Palace not worried if drug war intel reports under Robredo watch to reach ICC
Malacanang on Sunday shrugged off the possibility of Vice President Leni Robredo sharing to the International Criminal Court intelligence reports that she could receive as an "anti-drug czar" about the government’s bloody campaign against illegal drugs.
In a radio interview, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the administration is not hiding anything on its war on drugs.
“First, the government is not hiding anything in the records, it is open,” Panelo said.
“And on the intelligence report, there is nothing wrong with it. If you say intelligence report, it consists of those who are involved in illegal drugs and that is what being followed by the agencies. What is wrong there?” he added.
Before her stint as the co-chairperson of Inter-Agency Council on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD), Robredo wanted the Duterte administration to let the United Nations body to visit the country to investigate the killings in relation to the “war on illegal drugs”.
In a press conference last Friday, Robredo, however, said she wants the problem on illegal drugs to be solved “internally” before seeking the help of the international body.
“After going around, after meeting with the different clusters, after having all the information that I need to have, if I believe that the government is not doing anything to, you know, punish whoever needs to be punished or to put to justice whatever needs to be put to justice, then I don’t have any problem with inviting them over,” she said.
“As I have always said that if there’s nothing to hide, then what are we fearful for? But you know, I would rather that we take care of whatever we have to take care of,” she added.
Last month, the National Union of Peoples' Lawyers (NUPL) asked the ICC to run a parallel investigation with the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) on murder and crimes against humanity charges against Duterte.
NUPL said the ICC may want to access information from the UNHRC, which in July passed a resolution calling for a comprehensive report from UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet on extrajudicial killings and other human rights violations in Duterte's anti-drug campaign.
Duterte has refused the two international bodies to conduct an investigation in the Philippines over the alleged extrajudicial killings due to the government’s campaign against illegal narcotics.
A petition against Duterte for allegedly committing crimes against humanity is also pending before the ICC.
The Philippines is no longer a signatory to the Rome Statute, which created the ICC, after Duterte ordered the withdrawal following the complaints filed against him before the international body. Ella Dionisio/DMS