23 September 2016

President Duterte urges cops in Cagayan de Oro to continue fight vs illegal drugs
(Camp Alagar, Cagayan de Oro City) Facing the police force here for the first time on Thursday, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte pressed them to continue the administration’s unrelenting campaign against illegal drugs.
In his speech, President Duterte reminded law enforcers of their obligation to protect the people from illegal drugs and criminality especially the younger generation.

“As commander-in-chief, I am not asking you for anything. But I am asking you to be conscious of the next generation,” the President said.

He vowed to protect policemen from prosecution if ever they are charged for violating the law while performing their duties. 

“Do not be afraid to do your duty… Do not compromise the next generation. It (illegal drug) is a very serious problem of our country,” he said.

He noted that drug addicts in the country have increased to almost 4 million from 3.7 million recorded by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) three years ago.

During the same event, the President awarded several cops for their significant contribution in government’s campaign against illicit drugs.

He gave each cop P200,000 while P250,000 for each police unit awardee. 

From Camp Alagar, the President proceeded to visit a wounded cop, Senior Police Officer (SPO) 1 Ronald Eugenio, who is recuperating at the Capitol University Medical Center.

Eugenio sustained injuries in a firefight while doing surveillance work in Opol, Misamis Oriental last August 6. He had gunshot wounds in the abdomen, lower jaw and throat leaving him disabled and unable to talk.

Communicating with the President using a white board, Eugenio expressed concern about the widespread drug problem in the country.

He also shared the President’s view that drug menace must be stopped as it already threatens the next generation of Filipinos. 

The President, accompanied by some Palace and police officials, gave financial assistance to Eugenio and promised to pay his hospital bills amounting to more than P2 million.

He also advised him to learn sign language so he could be productive once he recovered. 

Eugenio, according to President Duterte, is entitled to receive P250,000 from the President’s social fund.

He was also given a spot promotion from SPO1 to SPO2. PND

President Duterte orders military to stop paramilitary groups amid ongoing peace talks
(CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY) -President Rodrigo Roa Duterte ordered the military on Thursday to take full control and stop paramilitary groups from operating amid ongoing peace talks with different rebel groups in the country.

Speaking to reporters following his visit in Camp Vicente Alagar here, President Duterte said the presence of the civilian armed groups could “undermine” the ongoing peace initiatives.

“I am now ordering the Army to take full control itong mga Bagani Command and the — there is another group I forgot the name,” the President said.

“Paramilitary men operating especially with firearms issued by the government would undermine the peace process. Mahinto na sana ito because we are really trying our best to come up with a peaceful country,” he added.

Paramilitary groups were organized in the past to help government in its campaign against communist insurgents in rural areas.

President Duterte particularly mentioned the Magahat-Bagani Force operating in Surigao del Sur and another group in Arakan, North Cotabato.

In his speech before scores of policemen here, he disclosed his scheduled meeting with National Democratic Front chairman Luis Jalandoni in Davao City on Thursday night.

“[Luis] Jalandoni is waiting for me in Davao. He’s there right now and I’ve invited them for dinner,” he said.

He stressed that he is pushing for an “inclusive government” and not a coalition government with the leftist groups.

He said he could come up with a peace deal with the Reds as long as they do not insist on having posts in the country’s police and military organizations.

The Duterte administration is also talking with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), Moro National Liberation Front (MILF) and the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), headed by Jose Maria Sison, in a bid to achieve lasting peace in the country especially in Mindanao. PND