Duterte's order to wipe out Parojinogs means to prosecute them to the fullest, Palace says
Malacanang clarified on Thursday President Rodrigo Duterte's order to wipe out the Parojinogs in Ozamiz City, saying it was meant to prosecute them to the fullest.
In a press briefing, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the President's order to shoot the suspects would only be done if there is violent resistance from the suspects.
"He (Duterte) is actually referring to those who are involved in illegal drugs. They should be prosecuted to the fullest," he said when asked of what Duterte meant when he ordered the authorities to wipe out the Parojinog family during his speech in Ozamiz City on Wednesday night.
He said the order did not mean to kill the Parojinogs.
"Killing will only come if they resist arrest, if they do violence to those who are enforcing the law. It is very clear, every time the President says that," said Panelo, also the chief presidential legal counsel.
Duterte has ordered the return of Chief Inspector Jovie Espenido to Ozamiz City.
Panelo noted the incidence of drugs in Ozamiz City worsened after Espenido was reassigned to another place.
The policemen, led by Espenido, raided in July last year the Parojinogs' properties in San Roque Lawis, Ozamiz, resulting in the death of Mayor Reynaldo Parojinog Sr. and other members of their family due to their alleged involvement in illegal drugs.
The slain mayor's daughter, Vice Mayor Nova Princess Parojinog, was arrested after the same operation.
After the bloody operation, Espenido was assigned to other places.
Espenido was also responsible for the dismantling of the drug operation in Albuera, Leyte. The town's mayor, Rolando Espinosa, who was allegedly a leader of a drug syndicate, was killed inside a jail. His son Kerwin, who was also allegedly linked in illegal drugs, has been detained and is facing charges related to illegal drugs, among others. Celerina Monte/DMS