Lacson: Duterte miscalculated the enormity of the illegal drugs problem

Published November 16, 2021, 11:57 AM

by Mario Casayuran

By President Duterte’s own admission, his war on illegal drugs has failed as he miscalculated the enormity of the problem and made the wrong assumptions, Partido Reporma chairman and standard-bearer Panfilo “Ping” Lacson said.

In an interview with Karen Davila on ANC’s “Headstart’’ today, Nov. 16, Lacson pointed to the President’s previous State of the Nation Address (SONA) last July when he said he thought he could deal with drugs the same way he did as longtime mayor of Davao City.

“Sabi niya, akala ko ganoon lang kasimple ang pagsugpo sa iligal na droga (He said, it was that simple to fight illegal drugs), I was mistaken, sabi niya (he said) I thought parang Davao City lang, so hindi na sa akin manggagaling,(so it did not come from me) Karen, malinaw naman ‘yung interpretation kasi (the interpretation was clear) he said it as plainly as he could,” the veteran lawmaker said when asked about Duterte’s drug war.

ANC’s query was in the context of the recent buy-bust operation in Davao De Oro over the weekend, following a party attended by the information officer of Davao City, Jefry Tupas.

Tupas admitted to being at the beach resort that was raided and where about P1.5 million worth of illegal drugs were seized by Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency operatives, who also arrested 17 suspects. He was later fired by Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio, the President’s daughter.

“It’s ironic, mahirap (it is difficult to) i-reconcile ‘yung (anti-drug) platform na nagpanalo sa kanya (that helped Duterte win)), and in the past 5 years ito ‘yung laging advocacy niya (that has been his advocacy rhe past five years), it’s a paradox,” added Lacson of the raid.

“In effect, in so many words, mali ‘yung kanyang assumption (his assumptions were wrong), ‘yung enormity of the problem na-miscalculate niya, so sa kanya na nanggaling na hindi matagumpay ‘yung kanyang advocacy, ang kanyang paglaban sa iligal na droga (his advocacy failed him, his fight against illegal drugs),” the former Philippine National Police (PNP) chief added of Duterte’s drug campaign.