Why this village chief rejects Oplan Tokhang

Angelo Andrade, ABS-CBN News Northern Mindanao

Posted at Jul 09 2016 11:35 AM | Updated as of Jul 09 2016 05:56 PM

Jaime Frias II, chief of Barangay 23 in Cagayan de Oro. ABS-CBN News

CAGAYAN DE ORO - Thousands of drug suspects have surrendered since the nationwide implementation of Oplan Tokhang.

But a village chief in Cagayan de Oro has rejected the police's anti-illegal drugs campaign, saying it violates human rights.

"Sa Oplan Tokhang, it consists only a violation of the right to privacy. It promotes self incrimination," said Jaime Frias II, chief of Barangay 23.

Under Oplan Tokhang (knock and plead), police officers visit houses of people suspected of being involved in illegal drugs.

"Sa Tagalog, parang pag-mamakaawa na, 'Please kailangan namin kayo, alam namin na involved kayo sa droga,'" Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Director General Ronald "Bato" Dela Rosa earlier said. "Kung matigas ang ulo nila, we will apply the full force of the law."

Frias did not deny that drugs are also rampant in his barangay, which has a population of at least a thousand.

He also clarified that he is not against President Rodrigo Duterte's fight against illegal drugs and criminality, which the administration targets to suppress in three to six months.

But he said instead of knocking on suspects' doors and forcing them to surrender, police should directly arrest known drug personalities.

"This needs a big force for them nga. No need for tokhang. Direct na, diretsahan na talaga sa pwersa," Frias said.