In the data obtained by a total number 6,095 of people were killed in Pres. Rody Duterte’s war on drugs since July 1, 2012 suspected drug personalities killed in police operations, as of December 14; and 3,993victims of extrajudicial or vigilante-style killings, as of December 12. This unprecedented number which never had occurred in the country’s history is a pride of the Duterte administration, an indicator of success of its all out war against drugs. The public however could not contain their angst over the spate of killings spurred by the current administration’s program.
While the leadership of the Philippine National Police constantly denounces police brutality and abuse, the death toll keeps hiking in all time high. This creates the inevitable imprint in the mind of the people that the Philippines is in open season on killing. Police authorities and unidentified assailants including the so-called “Davao Death Squad” are in apparent murder spree over particular “targets”. Again, utilizing the reasons and leeway so boldly articulated by PRRD, the killers enjoy the elusive impunity.
The Catholic Church is strongly opposed to death penalty, much more to the extra-judicial killings going on across the archipelago in the Duterte administration’s war on drugs. In this season of love and gift-giving, can it be possible that like a ceasefire between rebel troops in Mindanao and the government forces, there will also a truce on war on drugs this month? At least this time, life which is the most important gift to humanity, will be given worth. The dictum “Save the user, jail the pusher” can by then be given practical application.