Honasan, Sotto blast Duterte's brand of justice vs criminals | Inquirer News

Honasan, Sotto blast Duterte’s brand of justice vs criminals

/ 03:52 PM April 28, 2016

Sen. Gringo Honasan and Sen. Tito Sotto tell the students of the University of Cebu about their platform of ridding drug abuse among the youth. MARC JAYSON CAYABYAB/INQUIRER.net

Sen. Gringo Honasan and Sen. Tito Sotto tell the students of the University of Cebu about their platform of ridding drug abuse among the youth. MARC JAYSON CAYABYAB/INQUIRER.net

CEBU CITY, Philippines—Vice presidential candidate Senator Gringo Honasan and reelectionist Senator Vicente “Tito” Sotto III on Thursday said extrajudicial killings of alleged criminals are not the solution to end criminality in the country.

The senators aired this message in their speeches before students of the University of Cebu.


The two candidates seemed to be taking a swipe at the brand of swift justice of Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, who has vowed to end criminality in three to six months partly by killing alleged criminals.


READ: Duterte on criminals: ‘Kill all of them’

Duterte is also alleged to be behind the vigilante group Davao Death Squad, believed to be responsible for a spate of summary killings in Davao City.

Honasan and Sotto campaigned together in Cebu City, the capital of Cebu province, the country’s most vote-rich province with 2.7 million registered voters.

In his speech, Sotto, a reelectionist senator under the Nationalist People’s Coalition, said eight of 10 drug cases in the last four years have been dismissed.

He added that there is only a four percent conviction rate among  drug offenders.

He said the long-term solution to drugs is education,  not summary killings of alleged drug pushers and users.


“The problem of drugs is such a complex crime you can’t just say you’re going to kill the pushers. This is the only crime where the victim is the criminal and the criminal is the victim,” Sotto said.

Sotto cited prevention and rehabilitation as more important than enforcement

“You cannot just kill. As I said earlier, in a presidency, (killing drug pushers) is easy to do. But you will not solve the problem. Your problem will become larger,” Sotto said.

For his part, Honasan, the vice presidential candidate of Jejomar Binay’s United Nationalist Alliance, cited Article III of the Constitution which states that no person shall be deprived of right to life, liberty and property without due process of the law.

He said criminals should not be summarily killed because even they have the right to life and innocence until proven guilty.

“Killing everybody will not solve the problem… Even criminals have rights. Suppose you make a mistake? Ano sasabihin mo sa umiiyak na nanay? Oops, I’m sorry, nagkamali kami, suspek lang pala (What will you tell a weeping mother? Oops, I’m sorry, I made a mistake, your child turns out to be a suspect only)?” Honasan said.

He said a candidate promising to end criminality in three to six months should instead focus on fighting poverty, which he said is the root cause of criminality.

READ: Escudero: Fight vs criminality a fight vs poverty

“We’ll solve crimes in so many months, ‘pag sinabi mong ganun, siguraduhin mong masosolve din ang poverty (if you say that, you should also make sure that you address poverty),” Honasan said.

After the visit, Honasan and Sotto took a drug test in the Cebu Regional Police District to show that they were willing to present themselves to public scrutiny to prove that they are clean from drug influence.

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They were accompanied by Sotto’s brother actor host Vic Sotto and basketball player Marc Pingris, the husband of Vic’s daughter Danica Sotto.IDL/rga

TAGS: Cebu City, Criminality, Criminals, Drugs, Poverty, Tito Sotto

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