Diño dispels gossips: No ‘tokhang’ vs village execs not PDP-Laban members
Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Undersecretary for barangay affairs Martin Diño has belied rumors that barangay officials who are not members of the ruling party would be “killed.”
At a news forum in Manila on Monday, Diño was asked if local village officials who are not members of the Partido Demokratiko Pilipino-Lakas ng Bayan (PDP-Laban) “ay ipapatokhang.”
Tokhang came from the Philippine National Police’s (PNP) anti-illegal narcotics campaign dubbed as “Oplan Tokhang” (Knock and plead). The drive had a connotation related to killing, after thousands of suspected drug criminals were killed under the administration’s drug war.
Diño said these are mere gossips.
“Eto na naman ‘yung haka-haka at saka kuro-kuro. Sa totoo lang ang tinitignan namin ay ‘yung trabahao ng barangay official,” he noted.
He also pointed out that with the extension of the term of current barangay officials, they should have already identified the illegal drug users and pushers in their respective villages.
“Mahal sila ni Presidente, two times na sila inextend. Ngayon ibig sabihin wala pa rin silang record ng list ng drug user at pusher sa barangay? Two times kana na-extend tuloy-tuloy pa rin bentahan ng droga sa barangay? Kaya this time wala nang forever,” he said.
The DILG official also said he would propose that those barangay officials who failed to submit their local drugs watchlist would be removed from office.
“Ang suggestion ko kay (officer-in-charge Eduardo) Año, first week (from deadline) hindi nakapag-submit (ng drug watchlist) warning, second week suspension, third week removal from office, kung ako ang masusunod,” he said.
“Kung maari ire-require ko na ang mananalong kapitan periodically magsa-submit sila ng list of suspected user at pusher at criminal sa kanya-kanyang barangay,” he also said.
In a press briefing last week, DILG spokesperson Assistant Secretary Jonathan Malaya said officials who failed to organize their Barangay Anti-Drug Abuse Council (BADAC) will face charges.
“Pag ‘yung barangay official ay nasa drugs watchlist at hindi pa niya inoorganisa ang BADAC niya—especially kapitan siya—sasampahan siya ng kaukulang kaso ng DILG,” he said. /kga