MANILA—Should Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. win the election, the Duterte administration's "war on drugs" will continue.
The presidential aspirant said his government would focus on going after drug lords, instead of the small players.
“Nag-usap kami ni President Duterte noon. Sabi niya, hindi ko na-imagine na ganito pala ka-lalim. Ganito pala kabigat ang problema ng droga. Kaya para sakin kailangan ipagpatuloy ang laban kontra sa droga . . . Medyo wholesale ngayon ang enforcement eh. I-focus natin du’n sa malalaki talaga. Kilala naman ng lahat ’yan eh, malalaman talaga. 'Yun na targetin natin. ’Wag na ’yung mga pangkaraniwan,” Marcos said.
He added he would also focus on improving rehabilitation centers rather than treating them as criminals. He said that the government must educate the youth on the ill effects of illegal drugs.
"Treat drug addicts as patients, in need of a cure. It becomes a crime when they're involved in distribution or sale of illegal drugs," Marcos said.
Duterte's commitment to fighting illegal drugs is considered one of the reasons why he won the presidential elections in 2022. The International Criminal Court (ICC) investigates the human rights violated in the administration's "war on drugs".
The Philippines withdrew from the ratification of the Rome Statute in 2019, the treaty that created the ICC.
However, the Rome Statute provides that it has jurisdiction over crimes committed while the country was still a party to the Rome Statute.
Marcos, however, is not keen on allowing ICC to intervene if he becomes the successor of Duterte.
“Papayagan ko sila dito pero mag-turista lang sila. I do not see the need for a foreigner to come and do the job for us and do the job for our judicial system. Our judicial system is perfectly capable of doing that," Marcos said.