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DOJ expects fresh insights from Robredo as anti-drug chief

The Department of Justice expects Vice President Leni Robredo to bring new insights into the government's anti-illegal drug campaign after she was appointed co-chair of the committee handling the war on drugs, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra has said.

The DOJ is an active member of the Inter-Agency Council on Anti-Illegal Drugs and is the lead agency in the body's justice cluster.

"It welcomes the inclusion of the vice president in the ICAD and hopes that she will inject fresh and constructive insights into the government's anti-illegal drug campaign," Guevarra said in a message to reporters.

President Rodrigo Duterte has designated Robredo, a critic of the controversial campaign, as co-chairperson of the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD) until June 30, 2022 unless the appointment is revoked sooner.

Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea said Robredo's role would include policy creation and ensuring the proper implementation of anti-drug operations and advocacy initiatives. The ICAD co-chair holds the rank of a Cabinet secretary.

Until Robredo's appointment, the ICAD was headed only by the PDEA, whose chief, Aaron Aquino, has expressed doubts on her capability to lead the campaign.

Presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo said the official designation was meant to show Duterte's "sincerity" in offering anti-drug powers to Robredo, the leader of the opposition.

The chief executive had first offered to make Robredo his drug czar, an invitation that followed her fresh criticism of the administration's war on drugs. —NB, GMA News