Will ex-PNP Chief Eleazar support ICC probe into drug war if elected senator?

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 23 2021 11:00 AM | Updated as of Nov 23 2021 11:44 AM

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MANILA - Former police chief Guillermo Eleazar on Tuesday said the Philippines should not hide anything when the International Criminal Court investigates alleged crimes against humanity during the Duterte administration's war on drugs.

Eleazar, who filed his candidacy for senator via substitution after retiring from the Philippine National Police, was asked if President Rodrigo Duterte should face the investigation after his term ends.

"Para sa akin, wala naman tayong dapat itago. From the very start, even as the PNP is in the middle of these controversies, ang aking panindigan nung una pa man ay kung tama, tama; ang mali ay mali. Wala dapat tayong itago. At kung may pagkakamali, wag nating paninindigan," Eleazar told ANC's Headstart.

(For me, we have nothing to hide. From the start, event as the PNP is in the middle of these controversies, my stand has been what's right is right; what's wrong is wrong. We should not hide anything. And if there are mistakes, we should not stand for it.)

Pressed again on whether Duterte and Sen. Ronald Dela Rosa, who was also named in the ICC complaint, should face the investigation, Eleazar said: "Lagi namang parehas pag may imbestigasyon and they will be afforded our own defense regarding this. Para sa akin, ibabalik ko ito that the sense of accountability ng bawat isa—hindi lang ng pulis, pero every citizen ay dapat accountable sa kanilang gagawin."

(It's always the same when there are investigations and they will be afforded our own defense regarding this. For me, I point again at the sense of accountability of everyone—not just the police, but every citizen must be accountable for their actions.)

"Even sa atin ngayon, domestically, kung merong imbestigasyon we welcome that. In fact, we encourage that para wag naman unfairly maisama yung mga taong nagtatrabaho nang maayos dito," he added.

(Even today, domestically, if there are investigations, we welcome that. In fact, we enoucrage that so that those who are working properly won't be implicated.)

Dela Rosa, who withdrew his candidacy for president, earlier said that if he is elected to the top executive post, he would protect Duterte from the ICC investigation. 

Eleazar is running under the slate of another former PNP Chief, Sen. Panfilo Lacson. Among the programs he wishes to pursue if elected is strengthening PNP Internal Affairs Service and upgrading the police force's technology to better prevent crimes.