‘Too judgmental,’ says Pacquiao as Trillanes notes 20,000 drug war deaths
“Judgmental masyado tayo.”
Sen. Manny Pacquiao lamented this on Wednesday as he and Senate President Aqulino “Koko” Pimentel III defended the government’s bloody war on illegal drugs.
It was Pacquiao who stood up first on the floor to question the assertion of Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV that government’s own records showed that the number of deaths in the Duterte administration’s drug war had already reached more than 20,000.
In a privilege speech, Trillanes noted that based on the administration’s year-end report, Malacañang listed 3,967 drug personalities who died in anti-drug operations from July 1, 2016 to Nov. 27, 2017 and 16,335 homicide cases under investigation from July 1, 2016 to Sept. 30, 2017.
“Since it was listed under the section of ‘Fighting Illegal Drugs,’ therefore, all of these deaths are drug-related and not for other causes. Maliwanag yan,” Trillanes said.
“So, to sum up these two figures, we’ll get 20,322 total number of deaths/EJKs under Duterte’s war on drugs,” he pointed out.
But Pacquiao questioned Trillanes’s assertion, saying the latter was already making a conclusion when the alleged extrajudicial killings (EJKs) were still being investigated.
“Yung iba hindi naman naniniwala na may EJK dito sa ating bansa?” Pacquiao asked. “Paano niyo masigurado na may EJK, do you have any evidence na EJK nga at natapos na ba yung investigation?”
Pimentel also asked Trillanes why the latter lumped the number of peope who died in the anti-drug operations and the number of homicide cases.
Aside from the number of deaths, the Senate leader reminded Trillanes that there were also hundreds of thousands or even more than a million drug suspects who had surrendered because of the government’s anti-drug drive.
“It’s also a fact that hundreds of thousands if not more than a million surrendered. So the option to surrender is there and stays alive,” Pimentel said.
Pacquiao agreed, saying the number of surrenderees was proof that drug suspects were not being killed by the law enforcers.
“Yun po yung basis ko na we can’t give conclusion on this matter dahil mahirap yun eh. Judgmental masyado tayo,” the neophyte senator said.
Pacquiao insisted that President Rodrigo Duterte was just enforcing the law so that the people would follow and respect the government.
“Kasi ang problema dito nawalawa na ang respeto ng tao sa ating gobyerno,” he said. “Yun ang gustong ibalik ng Pangulo na ang bawat isa, bawat tao, bawat mamayan sa ating bansa magkaroon ng respeto sa ating gobyerno, sa ating Konstitusyon.”
“So Mr. President, kailangan pala nating patayin para respetuhin tayo eh,” Trillanes said. “Pag patayin mo na, paano ka pa rerespetuhin kung patay na?”
“I’m not saying that we have to kill them all,” Pacquiao answered.
In the end, Pacquiao thanked Trillanes for their “gentle” discussions on the issue.
Reacting to Pacquiao’s remark, Pimentel said: “Gentlemanly behavior. What kind of behavior did you expect?”
Despite their differing opinions, Pacquiao explained that he and Trillanes were not enemies as they were just doing their job. /atm
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