Malacanang says anti-drug battle is “ a success”
Malacanang said more than one million drug users and pushers surrendered to authorities making the administration's war on drugs a success.
“Without a doubt, the president’s anti-drug war is a success,” said Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar in a statement last Saturday.
In his New Year’s Message, President Rodrigo Duterte invited Filipinos to join him the fight against illegal drugs, criminality and corruption.
“The achievement of these goals will reclaim order and safety in our communities and enable us to restore the public’s trust in government and in our people’s capacity to serve,” said Duterte.
Andanar said figures from the Philippine National Police showed a total of 1,007, 153 people surrendered from the period of July 1 to December 31.
"These pushers and users voluntarily surrendered through the continuous efforts and relentless operations of the PNP to curtail the illegal drug trade in the country in line with the president’s directive," Andanar said.
He said the decrease in country's crime rate of 32 percent is the real score in the administration's intensified anti-drug operations.
But police figures show that cases of murder rose. Duterte, in a series of interviews with news outfits last week, said he is virtually waging war against illegal drugs.
“Then I say that I’ll have to fight drugs. I am fighting it. As a matter of fact, a lot of people are complaining me, complaining about me because of my fight against the drugs,” said Duterte.
Around 6,000 persons have died since the Duterte administration began its war against drugs since he assumed office on June 30, human rights groups claim.
But Andanar said "people feel safer in the streets and at night because the number of theft, carjacking, robbery, rape, physical injury has decreased.”
He said there will be no let-up and the government will continue to seize the momentum until the last drug pusher is out of the street.
He also said the next phase on their drug campaign will be in full gear this year. “We shift from the national security mode into the public health mode in our war against illegal drugs," he said. Ella Dionisio/DMS