Bong Go urges authorities to continue campaign against illegal drugs

Senator Christopher “Bong” Go has expressed disappointment over the re-emergence of the issue of “ninja cops,” and called on authorities to remain relentless in the fight against criminality and illegal drugs.

Particularly, Go urged authorities to address reports that police personnel are rewarding informants with illegal drugs. “Ninja cops” refers to police operatives involved in the resale of confiscated prohibited drugs.

In an interview after aiding indigent families in Romblon on Thursday, 16 March, Go said that the re-emergence of “ninja cops” is a setback to the sacrifices made by the administration of former president Rodrigo Duterte to fight illegal drugs and criminality in the country.

“Ayoko pong masayang ang inumpisahan ni dating pangulong Rodrigo Duterte na labanan po ang iligal na droga, labanan ang kriminalidad,” said Go.

“Kayo na po ang humusga kung nakakalakad ba ang inyong mga anak na hindi nababastos, nasasaktan. Dahil po ‘yan sa sakripisyo ni (dating) pangulong Duterte na labanan po ang kriminalidad at iligal na droga,” added Go.

Go noted that the issue has caused fear among citizens, adding that if the problem persists, it will destroy families and victimize many more people.

“Ngayon, kung bumabalik na naman itong ninja cops at sinasabi recycled, kahit na ilang porsyento po ang ni-recycle nila, alam n’yo, ilang buhay na naman po ang masisira d’yan, ilang pamilya na naman po ang wawasakin,” warned the senator.

“Kapag kumalat po ang droga sa daan, marami na naman pong pamilya ang masisira,” he added.

During a Senate hearing conducted by the Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs on 15 March, Police Senior Master Sergeant Jerrywin Rebosora and Police Master Sergeant Lorenzo Catarata were questioned regarding the Philippine National Police’s investigation into the disappearance of 42 kilograms of methamphetamine hydrochloride that were seized during an operation in October.

The police officers have been cited in contempt by Senators Raffy Tulfo and Ronald Dela Rosa after the senators noticed inconsistencies in their statements.

Meanwhile, in a hearing at the House of Representatives on the same day, the House Committee on Dangerous Drugs revealed that only 30 percent of the confiscated drugs are declared by the “ninja cops” and their informants, with the rest being recycled and sold for profit.

Furthermore, it was noted that corrupt anti-drug agents adhere to an “unwritten and discreet policy” in which they retain 70% of each drug seizure as “savings” and subsequently sell the drugs for profit.

Go emphasized that the reselling of illegal drugs should not be tolerated, and those involved in the practice should be held accountable.

“Alam n’yo, kapag may biktima ng droga sa isang pamilya po, sira na ang pamilya. Iwan n’yo ang pitaka n’yo, bukas wala nang laman, nananakawin na. Kaya hindi po katanggap-tanggap kung babalik po ang iligal na droga,” said Go.

“‘Yung sinasabi nilang nire-recycle daw, kung mapatunayan ‘yan, dapat po ay managot, dapat po ay tuldukan ang practice na ‘yan. Sa pagdinig po kahapon sa Senado, hindi po katanggap-tanggap na gagawin pong bayad sa informant ang ni-recycle na droga po,” he added.

The senator also pointed out that the victims of illegal drugs are not just individuals but entire families, as drug addiction destroys not only the user but also those around them.

“Kahit na isang porsyento, hindi po katanggap-tanggap ‘yan. Walang dapat bumalik na droga sa daan o sa kalye dahil masisira na naman ang pamilya, masisira ang utak ng magiging biktima po ng droga,” emphasized Go.

Previously, Go has stressed the importance of establishing mandatory rehabilitation centers nationwide in a bid to eradicate illegal drugs in the country.

The lawmaker filed Senate Bill No. 428 which shall establish a Drug Abuse Treatment and Rehabilitation Center in every province throughout the country, highlighting the need to sustain the gains from the previous administration’s campaign against illegal drugs and its success in likewise addressing criminality and corruption.

To help victims of illegal drugs reintegrate into society, the proposed rehab centers will provide care, treatment, and accommodation to drug dependents. They will also offer after-care, follow-up, and social reintegration services to assist their patients in adjusting to community life after their release.

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