Duterte not capable to order killings: Andanar
President Rodrigo Duterte is not capable to order the killings of certain individuals when he was still a mayor of Davao City, a Palace official said on Thursday.
"Do I think he’s capable? No, I don’t think he’s capable of giving a directive like that," Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar when asked about the testimony of an alleged member of Duterte's death squad in Davao during the continuation of a Senate inquiry on extrajudicial killings.
Justice Secreatary Vitaliano Aguirre II said Senator Leila de Lima revived lies and an old story about the so-called “Davao Death Squad” to divert public attention from her links to illegal drugs trade in the National Bilibid Prisons.
Former Speaker Prospero Nograles denied claims by former Davao Death Squad member Edgar Matobato that four of his bodyguards had been executed by vigilantes in Davao City.
"As far as I know, there's not a single incident that any of my staff or security personnel who were assigned to me while I was still politics was killed even when I ran for mayor in 2010,” said Nograles.
"Furthermore, witness could have asked speaker’s protection when I was at the height of power and could have gotten legislative protection program security safe house etc. But he did not," Nograles added.
Davao City Rep. Karlo Alexei Nograles, the older Nograles" son, said he does not know anything about Matobato's statement.
“I don’t know what this guy is talking about. From the time I was chief-of-staff to the time I was elected as congressman, no supporter of ours or persons under our employ was ever killed due to politics,” he said.
Duterte, who visited a military camp in Bulacan province, did not comment.
Duterte, in a speech in Bulacan, appealed to police and military to continue the fight against illegal drugs even after his administration or if he is assassinated.
"If the problem is still be there, and I'm not here in the world, please take care of your country. Do not allow drugs...do not allow the country to take a deadly spin in drugs," he said, adding this will be for their children and the next generation.
Duterte brought a thick compilation of papers, which he said contains a list of some 1,000 government officials allegedly involved in the drug menace.
The list contains names of village chieftains, policemen, military, mayors, and justices, among others. Emmanuel Tupas, Celerina Monte