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Duterte: Only poor use shabu, rich addicts do 'safer' cocaine, heroin

Why is the government's campaign against illegal drugs focused on suspects in urban poor communities?

Aside from saying that wealthy drug lords are running their illicit business from outside the country, President Rodrigo Duterte said there's no shabu trade in exclusive villages like Forbes Park in Makati City.

"Wala akong nakitang nag-distribute diyan sa Forbes Park, nagbabantay din ako, kasi ang mga tao diyan hindi shabu ang hinihirit diyan. Ang mga tao diyan hinihirit ay cocaine pati heroin," Duterte said in a news conference, held at the wake of Senior Inspector Mark Garcia.

Garcia died in a buy bust operation in Antipolo over the weekend.

"But cocaine and heroin are not as destructive as shabu because itong cocaine and heroin are manufactured out of the derivatives of a poppy, tanim iyan parang marijuana. So it is not as destructive to the mind as meth, which is just really a combination of a deadly mix of chemicals," Duterte said.

Duterte said the poor mostly use shabu or methamphetamine hydrochloride, which is sold in not so well-off communities.

"Mahihirap ang marami kasi they are an easy target," Duterte said.

On criticisms that his war on drugs was anti-poor, Duterte said campaign exempted no one.

"Just because you are poor, you are excused from apprehension...? Rich or poor, I do not give a shit," Duterte said.

"My order is to destroy," he added. —NB/JST, GMA News