Palace admits SWS survey on drug war shows ‘ugly truth’

Dharel Placido, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 03 2017 08:50 PM

MANILA – Malacañang on Tuesday admitted that results of a recent Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey on government’s war on drugs shows the “ugly truth,” even as it assured the public that the rights of the poor are respected in the campaign.

Results of a June survey released this week showed that 60 percent of Filipinos believe that only poor drug suspects end up dead in the war on drugs.

Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella admitted that most of those caught or killed in the campaign are poor, but said the government makes sure that those who have less in life are not left vulnerable to police abuse.

“[It’s] an ugly truth na ganun nga. However, that's exactly why the President is allowing now for full investigation so that those who can defend themselves less have more in terms of the backing of law,” Abella told reporters in a chance interview.

“This is exactly why policemen are being retrained. That’s exactly why they are relieved of position. It’s being addressed. Huwag po tayong myopic. Huwag po tayong nakatutok lang sa ganitong maliliit lang. Tingnan natin ang ginagawa ng Presidente ba [na] malawakan. And he's truly addressing it,” he said.

The SWS survey showed that most of those who agreed with the statement “rich drug pushers are not killed; only the poor ones are killed” were in Metro Manila (48 percent), followed by Mindanao (34 percent), Visayas (31 percent), and Balance Luzon (29 percent).

The non-commissioned survey results were released days after another SWS poll showed that most Filipinos (63 percent) believe drug suspects are still killed even after surrender.

A separate survey meanwhile revealed that 54 percent of Filipinos agree that many of those killed in the anti-narcotics campaign did not fight it out with police.