Palace says Robredo's drug war report a 'dud'

Arianne Merez, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 06 2020 03:24 PM

Vice President Leni Robredo. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News/file

MANILA- Malacañang dismissed Monday the long-hyped drug war report and recommendation of Vice President Leni Robredo as a "dud," saying there was nothing new with her findings.

Presidential Spokesman Salvador Panelo belied Robredo's claim that the government's 3-year anti-narcotics drive is a failure for supposedly seizing only less than 1 percent of the total shabu supply.

"It's a dud. Wala naman siyang sinabi doon na bago na hindi tinututukan ng mga ahensiya na involved sa laban sa droga. There's nothing new with what she said," Panelo told reporters in Malacañang.

(Everything that she said is already being attended to by government agencies involved in the drug war.)

"I think she just wants to be relevant," he added.

Robredo was supposed to release her report on the drug war in early December after she was fired by President Rodrigo Duterte as co-chair of the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD) 18 days since her appointment.

She, however, decided to delay the report in deference to the victims of the magnitude 6.9 earthquake in Mindanao, a move that did not sit well with the Palace.

Citing police data, Robredo said around 3,000 kilos of shabu is consumed in the country every week or around 156,000 kilos per year but only less than 1 percent is seized by authorities.

Data from the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency showed it only seized 1,344 kilos shabu from January to October, 2019; 785 kilos in 2018; and 1,053 kilos in 2017, she said. 

"Isipin na lang natin kung exam ito. Magiging iskor ng ating pamahalan ay 1 over 100," Robredo said in a press conference Monday.

(Let's just imagine if this were an exam. Our government would have scored 1 over 100.) 

Asked to comment on Robredo's findings, Panelo was quick to claim that the vice president made a wrong computation but later said he would leave it to the PDEA to comment on the vice president's figure.

The Duterte spokesman, however, maintained that the government's drug war is successful.

"Eh kung failure yun, eh 'di sana yung problema natin sa droga inabot na sana lahat ng pamilya. The fact remains that we have dismantled so many illegal drug factories," Panelo said.

(If it's a failure then the drug problem should have affected all families.)

"Ang problema kasi, ilang araw lang siya (Robredo) naupo doon ang dami na niyang sinasabi wala naman siyang expertise," he added.

(The problem is she thinks she's already an expert even if she only held the post for a few days.)