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Exclusions

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The testimony that stood out above all other testimonies in the House probe on the proliferation of illegal drugs at the National Bilibid Prison (NBP) was that of General Benjamin Magalong, currently the Deputy Director General for Operations of the Philippine National Police and formerly the Chief of the PNP’s Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG).

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The testimony of self-confessed and alleged former member of the so-called “Davao Death Squad” (DDS), Edgar Matobato, during the Senate inquiry on claimed extrajudicial killings in the country raised more questions than providing answers to the issue being investigated.

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Extrajudicial

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Extrajudicial killing is simply defined as killing of a person by government authorities without the sanction of the legal process. Clearly, extrajudicial killings do not include the killing of persons in the performance of legitimate military or police operations.

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Indigenized education

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The Department of Education (DepEd) has shifted the implementation of its Indigenous Peoples Education (IPEd) program to high gear – a long overdue action from a government that operates within a Constitution that has in it a declared state policy of giving priority to education and explicit provisions on the protection and promotion of the right of all citizens to quality education at all levels and the taking of appropriate steps to make such education accessible to all.

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Budget Circular No. 2016-5 issued by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) does not speak of any novel austerity measure for the government as a similar circular was also issued during the term of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. However, in the overall context of “change” in government that the Duterte Administration is pursuing, the ban on the purchase of luxury vehicles by any government agency is a small, yet very significant element of what President Duterte calls a “clean government.”

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The Duterte Administration certainly has the character of honoring its word. Such is the opposite of the “broken promises” character of previous administrations. The current administration is also admired for its fast actions on the people’s concerns.

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