MANILA – Philippine National Police Chief Director General Ronald Dela Rosa admitted it is possible that there is a group of vigilantes behind the rising number of summary executions all over the country.
One example, the lifeless body of uniformed police PO3 Micheal Manalad was found tied to a lamp post last July 7 in Meycauayan, Bulacan.
Dela Rosa said in an exclusive interview with ABS-CBN News, “May nakikita naman tayong namatay, lalo ‘yung isang pulis na pinatay. Maybe nag-start na, meron silang vigilantism na sinimulan na dito sa Region 3.”
When asked what could be the motivation behind the summary killings, he said, “Kahit sino siya, basta galit sa droga, he can do anything. He can be a civilian, he can be a policeman, he can be a military man, he can be a retired police or retired military.”
The PNP chief said the vigilante killings do not, in any way, tarnish their campaign against illegal drugs as long as these are not committed by any of his men.
"Ang nakakasira talaga kung ‘yun ay kagagawan ng government actors, but di naman natin ma-establish kung sino ang gumawa noon. Hindi ko masasabi na nakakasira iyan sa aming effort, hindi ko sigurado kung sino ang may gawa," dela Rosa said.
So far, Dela Rosa has not received any word from the vigilante group.
“Kung gusto man nilang gawin, gawin na lang nila, wag na lang nilang ipaalam sa akin. Dahil hindi ko naman sila papayagan na gawin yon,” he said.
Meanwhile, the PNP Crime Laboratory has confirmed that 20 PNP personnel have tested positive for illegal drug use after confirmatory tests.
More than 22,000 PNP personnel participated in random drug tests from May 9 to July 12.
Ranks of those who tested positive ranged from PO1 to police inspector. Five are from Luzon, three of which are from the Quezon City Police District, six from Visayas and nine from Mindanao.
Chief Superintendent Emmanuel Aranas, director of the PNP Crime Lab said, “Alam naman ng mga cops at directors kung ano ang next action to be taken kasi after the confirmation results, we are sending the results to their immediate superior.”
Another 16 police personnel tested positive and will be undergoing confirmatory tests.