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President walks the talk

For a seasoned political analyst, President Duterte simply walked the talk when the Chief Executive named five police generals as suspected coddlers of drug lords Tuesday.

According to Institute for Political and Electoral Reform Executive Director Ramon Casiple, Duterte is basically keeping his campaign promise of getting rid of the drug menace in three to six months.

During his speech commemorating the 69th anniversary of the Philippine Air Force in Pampanga, Duterte made a surprising announcement when he identified five police generals, three of them still in active service, as protectors of bigtime drug syndicates in the country.

Casiple said Duterte probably saw the need to be bold with their stance against drugs as they now probably know how deep the issue is.

“Kasi ang thesis naman ng president eh malawak na at malalim ang penetration sa gobyerno nitong drugs kaya tingin niya ganoon ka-drastic dapat (ang aksyon) dahil sa ganoon nakalaki ang problema,” said Casiple. “Bahagi itong campaign promise niya. Big fish ang mga ito which is certainly within the context ng promises niya yun.”

Duterte named Director Joel D. Pagdilao, Chief Supt. Edgardo G. Tinio, and Chief Supt. Bernardo Diaz, together with retired Deputy Director General Marcelo Garbo and Chief Supt. Vicente Loot, who is now the mayor of Daanbantayan, Cebu.

“Imbestihagan ninyo ito at huwag ninyong akong bigyan ng zarzuela. Hanapin ninyo ang totoo,” said Duterte. “Itong mga ito, after so many validations, even if I was still mayor of Davao City, lumalabas na itong mga pangalan na ito.”

Before they were placed on floating status last July 1 by Philippine National Police chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa, Pagdilao was the chief of the National Capital Region Police Office while Tinio was the top dog at the Quezon City Police District. Diaz was the director of the Western Visayas police.

Casiple said that while previous administrations have done similar bold accusations, Duterte’s way of handling the issue makes him look like a cut above erstwhile governments.

“Kung titignan natin yung total effect, ito na yung phenomenon ngayon na by the hundreds na ang nag-surrender both pusher and user,” said Casiple. “Ang tanong later kasi, bakit puro small fish at nasaan yung big fish? Eto na ngayun.

Nasimulan na. Pinakita niya lang yung political will.” (DENNIS PRINCIPE)