Former Bacolod councilor delisted from drug watch list
BACOLOD CITY––The name of a former councilor of this city, who survived an ambush in December 2018, was deleted from the government’s drug watch list.
Ricardo “Cano” Tan on Saturday, Oct. 23, thanked President Duterte for removing him from the dreaded list.
“Today marks my complete freedom from all the fake news against me and my family. Today, I stand before you as a vindicated man,” he said at a press conference at his Campuestohan Highland Resort in Talisay City, Negros Occidental.
Interior Secretary Eduardo Año, in a memorandum order dated Aug. 11, 2021, certified that Tan was “removed/delisted from the Inter-Agency Drug Information database under the recommendation, review, evaluation, and management of its committee and approved by President Rodrigo Roa Duterte through a memorandum dated July 31, 2021.”
Tan, who recently received a copy of the memorandum, said the development is a “closure to a bad dream.”
In December 2018, Tan and his wife Nita were ambushed in Barangay Alangilan.
The couple was on their way home on board a Nissan Patrol when at least three unidentified assailants shot him several times.
The two were wounded but survived the attack.
About a month after the ambush, President Duterte linked Tan to the illegal drug trade.
In May 2021, Tan said his wife and son were able to meet Duterte in one of the latter’s visits at the city.
Tan said Duterte ordered government agencies to revalidate all the accusations against him.
The Philippine National Police in Western Visayas, eventually, cleared him from any derogatory records with regards to the illegal drug trade.
On Saturday, Tan thanked the President for the objective review of his situation and Año for issuing the certification.
“This certification is the vindication I have long prayed for. This certification signed by Secretary Año bearing the approval of President Duterte is not just a piece of paper. It is the symbol of freedom from all accusations against me and my family,” he said.
“Time and again, I strongly deny any involvement in any form of illegal drug activities. I hope that the people who spread fake news against me will now stop,” he added.
Tan, who is running for councilor of Bacolod in next year’s polls, said he and his family suffered a lot because of those false accusations.
“The road to vindication was not easy for me and my family. In my advocacy, I always stand firm against all forms of corruption and illegal activities,” he said.
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