The temptation of drugs and money Trolls
THE lure of easy money obtained thru ille gal means such as the possession of, dis tribution and sale of dangerous drugs particularly ‘shabu’ has claimed another victim, this time a high ranking officer of the Philippine National Police (PNP) who is on President Rodrigo Duterte’s “narcolist”.
Whatever anybody might say the plain and simple truth is that the appeal of making so much money out of the sale of small packets of the illegal drug ‘shabu’ has led so many of our countrymen into the path of perdition.
The recent death of police superintendent Santiago Ylanan Rapiz, logistics chief of the Zamboanga Del Norte police reveals that even agents of the government and those supposedly involved in the campaign to rid the country of prohibited drugs are not themselves immune to the poison of illegal drugs.
But what is more disturbing is that despite the fact that police superintendent Rapiz has already been identified as either a protector or a distributor of ‘shabu’ and thus included in the narcolist of the president he continued to enjoy, up to the time of his being killed by undercover agents from the PNP Counter-Intelligence Task Force (CITF) and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), the perks and benefits of his office as well as possibly going to work regularly as a cop.
There is a clear and present danger posed to the public when a suspected police scalawag is allowed to continue interacting with the ordinary citizens considering the influence and authority that can be exerted to either coerce, coopt, or worse manipulate ordinary individuals seeking the assistance of a government office.
From a practical and logical point of view the government might have to consider putting under preventive suspension or restrictive custody those agents in authority such as policemen already identified and included in a validated ‘narcolist’ instead of still allowing them the freedom of movement and interaction with the public.
For all intents and purposes the late superintendent Rapiz might have used his office to advance his interests in the illegal operation of ‘shabu’.
While we follow the legal dictum that one is innocent until proven otherwise the gravity of the offense as well as the nature of the office involved should be carefully considered and weighed in determining whether a government agent suspected of being involved in illegal drugs should be allowed to continue in office or pending the determination of his liability or guilt.
The public must be protected at all times and the government must do its utmost to guarantee that there is no whiff or scent of misdeed or illegality in the daily work of the authorities especially the members of the PNP who are supposed to have sworn to protect the lives and property of the people.
AFEW years ago there was this quarrel among some people in the media stem ming from the pursuit of ethical standards. Somebody naturally zeroed in on those covering the Bureau of Customs (BOC) beat. The BOC, after all, is a magnet for the corrupt practitioners and the socalled “haoshiao” media people or “ko-medya” and the so-called “Friday Club” of old.
Again, that was years ago and I don’t know how the BOC is being covered now by the Cebu media. That “somebody” who criticized the coverage of the BOC in Cebu did take it upon himself to do the covering himself.
As an old hand in the coverage of the BOC would later tell me, the critic naturally got stumped when he went to the BOC because he was clueless of the procedure and where the possible sources of corruption were. He didn’t know where to start his sleuthing. He eventually let go and never went back to the BOC again.
I remember that story when President Duterte deployed the military to watch over the running of the BOC. The military personnel can be at the BOC premises all they want, but as long as they are clueless about how the agency is being run, all that they can do is intimidate the BOC personnel and hope they will change ways by intimidation. Aside from that, they could not do anything much.
Corruption in the bureaucracy, like the illegal drugs trade, are complex problems. That is precisely why both have survived through the years. Intimidation alone can’t solve these problems. As they say, complicated problems can only be solved using intricate solutions. Deploying the military is too simplistic an approach and may not work by its lonesome.
Everything has been silent so far at the BOC front. It would be interesting to find out what is happening there days after the military deployment.
The trolls are intact, or their presence may even have been strengthened with the 2019 midterm elections just around the bend. Or at least that is what I could glean from the report about the killing of Charie Mae Mancia, who was found inside her room with multiple stab wounds in the neck and other parts of her body Sunday (Nov. 4) dawn. The report posted on Facebook immediately attracted trolls.