VP Robredo used 'unofficial' data in drug war report: PNP

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 08 2020 08:43 AM | Updated as of Jan 08 2020 08:57 AM

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The Philippine National Police on Wednesday decried Vice President Leni Robredo's evaluation of the drug war as "unfair," saying Robredo used "unofficial" police data for her report.

Citing police data, Robredo had said authorities seized only P1.4 billion worth of drugs out of P1.3 trillion circulating in the country every year.

PNP spokesman Brig. General Bernard Banac said Robredo, who had a brief stint as co-chair of the inter-agency committee on anti-illegal drugs (ICAD), may have "misunderstood" the data.

"With her 18 days of stay as co-chair of ICAD, it’s not a complete picture of the situation. She may have gotten the data incompletely," he told ANC's Early Edition.

"We see that all this would be a challenge for us but we thank her for the comments and suggestions."

Banac said the police data was just an "estimate" to "project the drug problem and plan ahead."

"We cannot use that estimate based on a wild guess... coming from us. We made an estimate and the Vice President used it to compare the amount of drugs confiscated during the actual operations," he said.

"Nobody can really make an actual estimate of the volume of drugs in the country. Not even the United States Drug Enforcement Agency was able to make an accurate assessment."

The PNP also rejected terminating Oplan Tokhang, or the house-to-house "knock and plead" operation led by policemen, Banac said.

"It has done a lot, it has taken off a lot of drugs off the streets. More people agree that this is effective," he said, citing a survey that showed 8 in 10 Filipinos were satisfied with the drug war.

He said cases of abuse of authority does not mean Oplan Tokhang was a failure.

The PNP will be focusing on arresting "high-value targets" or those who sell 50 grams or more of illegal drugs, Banac said.

It is also expected to procure body cameras for police operations by the middle of the year, he added.