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COMPARED TO THOUSANDS WHO SURRENDERED

PAO chief defends police, says number of drug suspects killed ‘negligible’


Public Attorney's Office (PAO) chief Percida Acosta on Sunday came to the defense of the Philippine National Police from criticisms due to the killing of more than 100 drug suspects.

"Yung bilang ng sumuko as of yesterday, nasa 63,000. Tapos ang sinasabing napatay ay more than 100. Kung ikukumpara ang 100 sa 63,000 halos negligible 'yan, point something lang," Acosta told radio dzBB in an interview.

Acosta added that it's unfair for critics to accuse policemen of murdering drug suspects.

Based on data from the Philippine National Police, a total of 135 drug suspects were killed in police operations in the first two weeks of July.

The police claim that drug suspects killed during operations resisted arrest and shot at the law enforcers.

"Kung ibibintang per se sa kapulisan, 'yan ay unfair dahil yung mga sumuko ay hindi naman pinatay ng pulis. Buhay sila," Acosta said.

She urged the public not to discourage the police from performing their duty.

"Yung mga kapulisan natin, na karamihan naman ay matitinong pulis, ay nangungumbinseng sumuko. Sana wag i-discourage ang mga pulis na ginagampanan lang ang kanilang tungkulin," Acosta said.

During the interview, the PAO chief affirmed PNP chief Director General Ronald "Bato" dela Rosa's claim that drug personalities, who were executed by unidentified gunmen, were ordered killed by drug lords.

"Mukhang tama ang intelligence ni General Bato na ang may pakana sa pagpatay sa less than 200 na 'yan ay sindikato rin para 'wag silang ituro. 'Yan ay kilos ng mga sindikato ngayon para limitahin yung puwede magsuplong sa kanila," she said.

She also said that the public should not judge the whole police organization for the supposed involvement of its officials in drugs.

President Rodrigo Duterte has tagged five active and retired police officials in the illegal drug trade.

The five police officials have denied the allegation. —Joseph Tristan Roxas/ALG, GMA News

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