MANILA- Mayor Caesar Perez of Los Baños, Laguna blamed politics for his inclusion in the government's list of politicians with alleged links to illegal drugs.
Perez, who is seeking reelection in the May 13 elections, denied any involvement in the illegal drug trade and blasted the release of the list as "unfair."
"Yan ay politically motivated kasi 2017 pa nag-start yang rumor na yan na ako ay kasama sa drugs so inignore ko lang yan kasi alam ko na hindi totoo yan," he told ANC on Friday.
(That is politically motivated because rumors that I'm involved in illegal drugs begun as early as 2017 but I ignored it because I know it's not true.)
"Hindi ko masyadong binigyang diin yan masyado kasi alam ko na hindi ako involved diyan at never in my life akong maiinvolve diyan," he added.
(I did not give much importance to that because I know that I am not involved and I would never be involved.)
Perez suspects that an old political rival way back in 2007 is behind his inclusion in the "narco-list."
"The person destroying me now is also a public knowledge in our town on what kind of person he is," he said.
President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday released the government's "narco-list" and said the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) has filed administrative cases against the local officials before the Office of the Ombudsman.
The list included officials holding positions from vice mayor and higher.
Prior to the release of the narco-list, Perez said he tried to clear his name by submitting a position paper to Malacañang and the DILG.
"I'm confident that my constituents know me," he said.