‘Sa kanila galing ang data:’ LP exec slams PDEA, PNP for criticizing Robredo’s drug war report
MANILA, Philippines — An official of the opposition Liberal Party (LP) on Wednesday criticized the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) for downplaying the assessment of Vice President Leni Robredo about the government’s war on drugs, saying they were the ones who gave the Vice President the data used in her report.
“Sa kanila galing ang data (They were the ones who gave the data),” Erin Tañada, LP vice president for external affairs, said in a statement. “Why are they criticizing the data mentioned by Vice President Leni in her report when they were the ones who submitted these numbers during her short stint as co-chair of the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD)? Are they now disowning their own data?”
Tañada said if both agencies at the forefront of the drug war are now disowning their own figures, then the campaign is clearly a failure as earlier pointed out by Robredo in her report released on Monday.
Citing data from the PNP Drug Enforcement Group (PDEG), Robredo said that the approximate minimum consumption of shabu in the country per week is 3,000 kilograms, or about 156,000 kilograms a year.
She noted, however, that the government only managed to seize 1,344.87 kilograms in 2019, 785.31 kilograms in 2018, and 1,053.91 kilograms in 2017. Robredo stressed this was a measly one percent of the total consumption of shabu in the country.
For PNP officer-in-charge Lt. Gen. Archie Gamboa, the data presented by the Vice President’s appreciation was wrong, while PDEA chief Aaron Aquino said the shabu consumption figures she had used was only estimated based on “wild assumption.”
Aquino said the ICAD holds no exact figures on the volume of drugs being consumed in the country, citing difficulties in consolidating such data.
Tañada said that the Duterte administration’s centerpiece program is really doomed to fail if it is unaware of what it is up against.
“Para kang pumunta sa giyera nang hindi mo pinag-aralang maigi kung sino ang makakalaban mo (It’s like going to war without studying well who you are up against),” said Tañada.
Instead of criticizing Robredo, concerned government agencies should consider her report seriously and use it as a guide in addressing the drug menace, he added.
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