Reuters file photo of President Rodrigo Duterte
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte described as stupid the claim by Sen. Ana Theresia “Risa” Hontiveros that the administration appeared to be implementing a policy of killing suspected drug users and traders.
In a media interview on Tuesday, Sept. 5, Duterte said it was brainless to conclude that two killings — apparently referring to the cases of 17-year-old Kian delos Santos and 19-year-old Carl Angelo Arnaiz, who were both killed by Caloocan policemen — meant that the government already had a policy to kill.
“Do you think two killings, even if it’s illegal, makes a policy? Dalawang patay, palagay lang natin pinatay, murder [Two dead, let’s just say they were murdered]. I ask Hontiveros, is that already the policy? Is that the baseline of the policy? Napakabobo naman n‘yan [That’s so stupid],” the President said.
The chief executive made the pronouncement after Hontiveros, during Tuesday’s Senate Committee on Public Order’s inquiry into the death of Delos Santos and Arnaiz, quizzed Philippine National Police chief Gen. Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa about the supposed policy.
READ RELATED STORY: ‘NAPAKASAKIT’: Bato cries once again as he denies any PNP ‘policy’ to kill
Duterte further assailed Hontiveros and the Liberal party for allegedly politicizing the issue, adding that the LP senator only displayed “pretended grief” when she attended Delos Santos’ wake.
“Ang problema sa inyo, ‘yong pinapakialaman n’yo ‘yong patayan, ‘yong magamit n’yo sa pulitika [The problem with you is that you interfere with killings that you can use in politics],” the President said.
“Why, the five who were killed in Bulacan, including a one-year-old, I do not hear them crying or even complaining that the police are not doing enough?” added Duterte, referring to the June 27 massacre in San Jose del Monte town of five members of a family, including three children, by suspects allegedly high on drugs.