Diokno hopes drug war killings will stop under Robredo
MANILA, Philippines — Lawyer Jose Manuel “Chel” Diokno sees the appointment of Vice President Leni Robredo as co-chairperson of the Inter-Agency Committee on Illegal Drugs (ICAD) as an “opportunity to correct” the Duterte administration’s drug war.
In a statement, Diokno said the drug campaign had been a “one-sided attack against the poor rather than a war against drug syndicates.”
“Under Vice President Robredo’s leadership, we hope that the killings will stop, and the government will finally take a better approach to the problem of illegal drugs,” Diokno said.
Diokno, dean of the De La Salle University Colleg of Law, said the committee on illegal drugs should prosecute drug lords and those in power who had been protecting them.
“It can start with the large shipments of ‘shabu’ that got through Customs. Those responsible for allowing these shipments to enter our country should be held accountable,” he said.
“The procedures in Customs should be reviewed and revised to prevent future shipments from entering the country, as transparency and accountability are crucial for the campaign against drug syndicates to succeed,” he added.
Diokno said that the committee could also work with other countries and international agencies and look into the global nature of the issue — particularly into the manufacturing and distribution of illegal drugs.
“And for the good of our people, we hope that the government starts treating drug addiction not as a crime but as a health problem,” Diokno said.
In a press conference earlier on Wednesday, the Vice President said her most important consideration in accepting the post was the opportunity to stop the killings of innocent individuals.
“And even if this offer may just be a form of politicking and that the agency really wouldn’t follow my orders or they would do anything for me not to succeed, I’m ready to endure all of that,” Robredo said in Filipino.
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