MANILA, Philippines – Local government units play a hand in the shipment of illegal drugs in the country, said Senator Robin Padilla.
The neophyte lawmaker on Tuesday acknowledged the need for stronger campaigns against illegal drugs on the barangay level.
“Ako po ay naniniwala talaga na ang battleground, nasa local government. Doon po talaga ang banatan – sa barangay,” he said during the organizational meeting of the Senate Committee on Public Order and Dangerous Drugs.
But Padilla also pointed out that the Philippine National Police (PNP) and other government agencies in the country are responsible for investigating local government units’ role in facilitating drug shipments into the country’s ports.
“Isa pong masakit na katotohanan. Meron talagang involved na local governments. Iyon po ang malungkot. Hindi naman po kayo makaka-landing sa dagat kung walang go signal noong local government,” the senator added.
Padilla then went on to echo what the PNP said earlier about establishing rehabilitation programs for drug suspects.
“Kailangan ko lang po talagang itulak dito. Hindi naman po pwedeng walang rehabilitasyon. Kailangan po may rehabilitasyon sapagkat meron po talagang mga biktima rito. Iyong mga biktima po rito, kawawa naman po kung wala tayong programa,” he said.
Even before he topped the senatorial race in the 2022 election, Padilla had been a staunch supporter of former President Rodrigo Duterte’s brutal war on drugs.
He argued that extrajudicial killings that marred the erstwhile administration’s war on drugs are part of the government’s efforts to combat criminality in the country.