Anti-drug war bishop assures support, prayers for Robredo | Inquirer News

Anti-drug war bishop assures support, prayers for Robredo

/ 08:15 PM November 07, 2019

MANILA, Philippines—Caloocan Bishop Pablo Virgilio David, one of the staunchest critics of the Duterte administration’s brutal war on drugs, assured Vice President Leni Robredo of “prayers and moral support” as she takes on her new role as the government’s anti-drug czar.

In a Facebook post Thursday, David said he initially had “apprehensions” when Robredo accepted President Duterte’s appointment for her to be the co-chair of Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD).

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“But after listening to her brief but straightforward speech,” David said he admired the vice president’s “bold decision” to accept the post and for her sincerity.

“I was most touched by that part in her speech when she said, “If I can save just one innocent life…” David wrote.

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“I can only assure her of my prayers and moral support,” he added.

The prelate, who has drawn Duterte’s ire for his criticisms on the crackdown on narcotics that has killed thousands of drug suspects, stressed that the church also wants to address problems concerning illegal drugs but “humanely” and with “respect to human lives and human rights.”

“We are partners of government if it deals with addiction mainly as a HEALTH ISSUE than as a CRIME,” he said.

READ: Duterte appoints Robredo co-chair of gov’t committee vs illegal drugs

Since taking power in 2016, Duterte has made the crackdown on illegal drugs the focal point of his administration, continuing the  campaign against which he used in Davao City while being its mayor.

Local and international human rights watchdogs have expressed their opposition to Duterte’s drug war, citing alleged violations of human rights, which the government vehemently denied.

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TAGS: Drug war, Leni Robredo, Pablo Virgilio David
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