Duterte shames De Lima and says ‘drugs must be destroyed’
MANILA — President Duterte was relentless in his public shaming of personalities with suspected ties to illegal drugs, this time targeting an “immoral” senator who, he claimed, has been in an affair with her drug-addicted driver.
Asked to name the government official he was referring to at the Philippine National Police event earlier on Wednesday, he directly named “De Lima,” obviously referring to Senator Leila de Lima, and raised questions on the source of the senator’s campaign fund. De Lima has launched a Senate inquiry on President Duterte’s aggressive war on drugs that led to the killings of almost a thousand drug pushing suspects without due process.
Paying his respects to Petty Officer 3 Darwin Espallardo of the Naval Intelligence Security Group, who was killed in an anti-drug operation and whose remains arrived at around 4 p.m. on Wednesday at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), Duterte said, “The drug problem, just like the Abu Sayyaf, must be crushed, destroyed. I don’t care how it is destroyed. It must be destroyed.”
He described illegal drugs as a “pandemic,” saying, “This is really a war. We win some battles and lose in other skirmishes but definitely we are willing to win the war.”
He added, “The government is not without resources, not without warm bodies fighting for this Republic in so many fronts. There is a new front that is deadly, one which is coming up. The one presently wreaking havoc in the lives of the people in this nation is drugs.”
The President took exception to the United Nations’ pronouncement that it would consider a possible “genocide” case against President Duterte as his war on drugs has led to the killings of 1,000 suspected drug offenders. He said it was “a very stupid statement.”
“You don’t come here and investigate the deaths of criminals and those suspected to have been killed by the police when after all we have also lost a sizable amount of our population …Why would you investigate (the killing of) criminals when in other parts of the world, there are killings of men, women and children, bombing of hospitals,” he said.
Speaking about human rights, he began his tirade against the “immoral” senator whom he said has been in an affair with her married driver who has been hooked on illegal drugs.
He further branded the “senator” as an “adulterer” and said that she was spending for her lover, including buying him a house and financing his drug habit. The President raised questions on where the senator funded her campaign, which won her a seat.
Duterte said that he has decided to stop pulling his punches with De Lima, who had investigated Duterte’s alleged ties to the so-called Davao Death Squad when he was still mayor of Davao City. SFM
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