PNP bars cops with drug links to join Oplan Tokhang
Members of the police force linked to illegal drugs would not be allowed to join and conduct house-to-house visitations in the renewed Oplan Tokhang, Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Dir. Gen. Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa said Friday.
Dela Rosa said some policemen use the campaign to extort money from drug suspects included in the anti-illegal drug watchlist.
“Hindi na talaga [kasama]. Kasi noon ginagamit talaga, mayroong gumagamit noon [ng Oplan Tokhang]. May dalang listahan, papasok doon [sa bahay, sasabihin], ‘nasa listahan ka o, kung hindi ka magbayad ng pera hindi ka matatanggal dito,’” Dela Rosa said in an interview with CNN Philippines’ The Source.
(They will no longer be included. Because before, there are some who use Oplan Tokhang. They have a list, go to the house and say, you are in the list, if you do not pay, you will not be removed here.)
Dela Rosa said that the PNP had created an oversight committee led by deputy chief for operations Deputy Director General Fernando Mendez Jr. to refine Oplan Tokhang and put stringent measures so it would not be used for abuse.
The PNP chief said the committee would go to different regions to disseminate the policy and to train policemen who would conduct the revitalized anti-drug campaign.
“We will be transparent pagdating sa operation na yan (when it comes to the operation),” Dela Rosa said.
The PNP has relaunched its anti-illegal drug operations after the government decided to return the war on drugs to the PNP.
President Rodrigo Duterte in October last year removed the PNP as the lead of his controversial anti-illegal drug campaign amid the allegations of human rights violations in police operations.
He ordered the undermanned Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) to take the lead.
Dela Rosa last week vowed of a “bloodless” and “real” Oplan Tokhang and assured the public that the police would observe standard operating procedures during operations. /jpv
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