Cayetano: House willing to hike Robredo’s anti-drug budget but…
TAGAYTAY CITY, Philippines — The House leadership is willing to augment the budget of the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD) where Vice President Leni Robredo serves as co-chair, Speaker Alan Cayetano said Thursday.
But the Taguig-Pateros representative has one request to the new anti-drug czar: Robredo should stop announcing her plans to the public because some information might be useful to drug lords.
“You need more funds? ‘Wag mo nang sabihin sa media. Malalaman pa ng mga drug lords na dadagdagan ka ng pondo o saan ilalagay eh. Makipag-meeting ka sa Kongreso, we will give you the funds kung kinakailangan,” Cayetano said in an interview in this city.
(You need more funds? There’s no need to announce it to the media. Drug lords might know that your budget will increase and which programs will have an increase. Just meet us in Congress, we will give you the funds if needed.)
“Presidente na mismo nagsabi, may mga law enforcers na into drugs so pag sinabi mo in public ‘susundin ko ‘yung intelligence ng US,’ eh ‘yung mga nakakaalam nun naa-alert na ‘yung drug lords,” he added.
(The President himself said there are law enforcement officers who are into drugs so when you announce that ‘I’ll follow US intelligence,’ some drug lords might be alerted.)
Robredo, who defeated Cayetano in the 2016 vice presidential race, has never said she would follow US intel on drugs. She just met interagency US officials on Wednesday and discussed the drug situation in the country and how the agencies could help the Philippines combat the illegal narcotics trade.
Cayetano also repeated his earlier demand that the opposition stop politicizing the brutal drug war.
The congressman claimed that by “having several interviews a day and by talking about everything even when it’s not yet implemented” Robredo has been politicizing the drug war.
Over 5,500 individuals have been killed in the government’s crackdown against illegal drugs, according to the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, but human rights groups have counted as much as 27,000 deaths.
Edited by MUF
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