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‘Drug lords team up with BIFF to kill Rody’

DAVAO CITY, Philippines – Philippine National Police chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa believes that drug lords have tied up with the local affiliate of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) to kill him and President Duterte.

He said the ISIS and BIFF are set to consider   exploding bombs to ensure that he and Duterte are killed.

“Government is still on track and would really want to achieve its plan of neutralizing illegal drugs in the country within the first six months of the Duterte administration,” he said.

Dela Rosa said Duterte’s bold pronouncements in going after what could be considered government officials and employees who are into illegal drugs have stirred the illegal drug trade.  

“In one region, they must be wiped out within six months,” he said.

“They must surrender or be neutralized… they must be wiped out. The number of drug personalities in one place must be neutralized. Either arrest them or they surrender or be killed in drug operations. They must be neutralized.” 

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Dela Rosa said many drug lords are on the loose nationwide.

“They are armed,” he said.

“Let us see how far they can go and how far we can go. They are now moving heaven and earth. They really want us, the President and me, killed.”

Dela Rosa said the bounty for his head and that of Duterte’s has been raised to a much higher price than the P50 million earlier reported.

“But I got used to it already,” he said. “I am ready to die anytime. I’m not afraid to die. It’s up to them. I leave it to the Lord if He wants me to die. He can take my life anytime.”     

Media involvement

Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II has disclosed that the government has received information that several media practitioners are being paid by drug lords supposedly to disrupt the administration’s all-out campaign against ilegal drugs.

Aguirre spoke at a fraternity anniversary last Monday evening at Cuneta Astrodome in Pasay City

He did not specify a media group or name the personalities involved, again deferring the announcement to President Duterte.

He only bared that the issue was tackled during their meeting at the Cabinet cluster for security, justice and peace.

“It turns our that these drugs lords are funding media to destroy the good intention of President Duterte in naming personalities involved in drugs,” he said.

He admitted having no further details and only hinted that the President is set to name “more prominent politicians” involved in drugs.

The National Union of Journalists in the Philippines quickly reacted to Aguirre’s pronouncement and called on the justice secretary to present evidence and file necessary cases to prove his statement.

“The NUJP demands that Justice Secretary Aguirre provide and name the media groups he claims are being funded by influential drug lords to derail the administration’s campaign against illegal drugs. And if the evidence warrants, file charges against them,” the group said in a statement.

The NUJP believes there is a need for the government to name names in dragging media people into the illegal drugs controversy.

“By casting such a broad assertion against media without presenting any proof, Mr. Aguirre is not only committing a serious injustice, he is endangering all journalists,” the NUJP lamented, citing the cases of 170 journalists who fell prey to extrajudicial killings since 1986.

“In effect, what Mr. Aguirre has done is spread a deadly rumor that could place any and all journalists in the cross-sights of those responsible for the orgy of drug-related extrajudicial killings that continue to flood our streets with blood,” the group added.  – With Edu Punay

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