PDEA told not to let drug money flow into elections
- Delon Porcalla () - February 11, 2010 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - A senior administration lawmaker called on the leadership of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) to ensure that drug money will not end up in the campaign kitty of politicians, especially now that the campaign period has begun.

“We should not allow the flow of drug money into our electoral processes. Let us not make a mockery of our electoral system. The national and local elections should be insulated from the influence of drug lords who buy themselves to power,” Rep. Roque Ablan said.

He emphasized that narco-politics should never be allowed at this crucial time. He said PDEA should intensify its anti-drug campaign, and strictly monitor the country’s airports and seaports, especially since these drug lords need political protection in order to carry on their business uninterrupted.

“The Philippines should not follow the footsteps of some countries where drug lords roam the corridors of power and influence affairs of governments at the highest levels,” Ablan added.

“Drug money is really a dangerous commodity to handle. We should never allow drug lords to share power in the government,” he stressed. “In the long run, it is our children and the future of the nation that are at stake.”

“With the coming elections, let us help our people identify personalities who use drug money in pursuit of their political ambitions. Let us not vote for them,” Ablan, chairman of the House committee on dangerous drugs, said.

Ablan is particularly alarmed over reports coming from PDEA claiming that Davao City - one of the country’s shipping hubs - has been pinpointed as a major drop-off point of smuggled drugs and local political figures are in complicity with smugglers.

Last December, an estimated P1-billion worth of high-grade cocaine was discovered inside the reefer machines of three empty container vans inside the Maersk shipping line container yard on Airport Road in Sasa port, Davao City.

“If this is true, it is indeed very alarming. This large seizure of narcotics right inside a supposedly secure port should trigger the alarm for PDEA authorities that there is no secure port nowadays especially where narco-politics is involved,” Ablan said.

“If local or even national government officials are in cahoots with these drug smugglers, we can never win this fight against illegal drugs. The PDEA should run after these people regardless of their political connections,” he added.

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