Marikina mayor: Scared pushers asked me for protection, travel money
FOUR drug suspects have approached Marikina Mayor Marcelino Teodoro—three seeking assistance in surrendering to the police, one asking for money so he could leave the city after sensing a threat to his life.
In an interview on Monday, Teodoro said the “small-time drug pushers,” who were not on the list of drug suspects that barangay officials gave to the police, came to his office recently to seek help.
One from Barangay Jesus dela Peña asked him for P800 last week so he could go to his hometown in the Bicol region, Teodoro said. The mayor gave him P2,000, which he said he drew from his personal funds.
“He was alone and scared when he came to my office. He told me he urgently needed to go home to the province for his safety,” said Teodoro, who admitted that the encounter caught him by surprise.
“It was a very awkward situation. I do not know if I will call the police to get them arrested or help them,” said Teodoro, a former congressman. “But I would have no evidence (against him) if I order the arrest, since there’s a law against self-incrimination.”
He said he gave the man P2,000 to cover his other needs.
Three other pushers showed up at the mayor’s office, Teodoro said, asking him to accompany them when they surrender to the police.
Teodoro said the suspects who went to see him “for protection” and expressed fears of being killed. The one who asked for cash said he felt threatened by the very drug syndicate he was allegedly involved in.
About a thousand drug suspects had so far surrendered to the Marikina police under “Oplan Tokhang.” As of July 24, the local police have also arrested 39 drug users and 12 pushers in 24 antidrug operations.
Three suspects were killed and two policemen were wounded in the operations.