EJK equals im­punity

Sun.Star Baguio - - OPINION -

LITTLE by little and with creep­ing re­al­iza­tion, peo­ple are now com­ing to grips with the re­al­ity that un­der the ad­min­is­tra­tion of Pres­i­dent Ro­drigo Duterte and his in­ces­sant cam­paign to wage war on drugs a cli­mate of im­punity has en­veloped the coun­try in terms of killing and end­ing the lives of per­sons and in­di­vid­u­als whether they are guilty or not of cer­tain crimes.

Whereas in pre­vi­ous ad­min­is­tra­tions such kind of im­punity would have been un­heard of, now it would seem to have be­come an or­di­nary event for some­one to be killed for al­legedly re­sist­ing ar­rest and con­fronting au­thor­i­ties with vi­o­lent force, par­tic­u­larly through so called buy-bust op­er­a­tions con­ducted by the po­lice.

One thing is cer­tain though ex­tra ju­di­cial killings or EJKs as they are called seem to hap­pen only un­der the watch of the Philip­pine Na­tional Po­lice or the PNP and amaz­ingly non-ex­is­tent or rare in anti-drug op­er­a­tions con­ducted by the Philip­pine Drug En­force­ment Agency (PDEA) which is the govern­ment agency sup­pos­edly tasked and whose job is to erad­i­cate il­le­gal drugs in the coun­try.

Now why is this so? Are those per­sons sub­jected to buy-bust op­er­a­tions con­ducted by the PDEA less vi­o­lent and more docile than those per­sons in­volved in buy-bust op­er­a­tions done by the po­lice? Or is it a mat­ter of so­cial stand­ing where af­flu­ent per­sons that are nabbed by the PDEA for il­le­gal drugs would rather meekly sur­ren­der while those caught in the anti-drug op­er­a­tions of the PNP would rather shoot it out with the au­thor­i­ties rather than give them­selves up be­cause of the dire sit­u­a­tion of their present lives where they are mired in poverty.

If such is the case then the re­cent sur­veys are cor­rect when it came out with a re­port that more peo­ple now be­lieve that EJKs to a large ex­tent tar­geted the poor. Right now re­ports have it that more than 3,800 peo­ple have been killed by the po­lice since the Pres­i­dent launched his war on drugs while more than 2,000 have been killed by un­known as­sailants.

With the po­lice claim­ing that there is ac­tu­ally no EJK com­mit­ted by them -go­ing by the govern­ment’s def­i­ni­tion of what an EJK is - then it is safe to sur­mise based on the sta­tis­tics above that for last year alone the coun­try had 2,000 mur­ders which have re­mained un­solved and for which the PNP has failed to re­solve in their fa­vor. For this sit­u­a­tion the PNP has mis­er­ably failed to live up to ex­pec­ta­tions through their oath to pro­tect the lives and prop­erty of the peo­ple.

How­ever it is quite un­der­stand­able for the PNP to have acted the way it did given the bless­ings and sanc­tion granted them by this present ad­min­is­tra­tion to go all out in the war on drugs.

The killings done by the PNP whether jus­ti­fied or le­git­i­mate as they claimed only gives face to what the Pres­i­dent has al­ready re­peat­edly said, dur­ing his cam­paign and now as head of the coun­try, that he will end the life of those in­volved in il­le­gal drugs.

This is im­punity plain and sim­ple.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Philippines

© PressReader. All rights reserved.