31 August 2016

Next generation’s future compromised if war on drugs fail-PPRD
The welfare of the next generation will be compromised if the government cannot stop the drug crisis.

This was the statement of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte during his visit in Tacloban City on Monday to visit 25-year-old PO1 Nestor Villanueva, Jr. who was wounded in action.

“If I cannot interdict or stop this industry, then I would have compromised the next generation, ‘yung mga anak ninyo. Delikado na. Then, we will become a failed state. So pagka ganon, kawawa naman ‘yung Pilipino,” the President said.

Speaking before the locals in Tacloban, the President lamented that there are at least two members of government forces, either military or police who die daily in the line of duty in the government’s war on illegal drugs.

He talked about how some count the deaths of people involved in the illegal drug trade but refuses to look into the number of policemen or soldier who die implementing the war on drugs. Duterte also mentioned of the failure of some people to look at the victims – children, women and others, of the drug pushers and users.

“Hindi ito nadadala ng counting ng 1,106 bodies or carcass there. Patay na ‘yung tao… carcass. Nagbibilang sila ng patay. Ang masakit dito, binibilang ang patay na mga gangster, na may kasalanan sa society. ‘Yung mga pulis, pati na, hindi naman nila nabibigyan, hindi nga nila mabigyan ‘yung tao, bata na pinutulan ng ulo, “ he said.

In the midst of his commitment that he will be giving out his full support to the police force in carrying out his orders, he assailed the human rights advocates.

The President reiterated his commitment to support the police and military forces,as he assured them that if any members of the law enforcement agencies are charged or they get into trouble while in the performance of their duties, he, as their Commander-in-Chief, shall assume all legal and official responsibilities for their actions.

The illegal drug crisis must be faced by the government eye to eye and the President is keen on doing his best to by waging the war on drugs.

You are the hero of the heroes’- blind soldier tells PPRD
Like a father of a family who provides guidance and inspiration to his children, President Rodrigo Duterte continues to inspire soldiers and policemen as he visits the different military camps the wounded and the families of those who passed away while performing their jobs.

2LT Jerome J. Jacuba during the President’s dinner with some 63 other soldiers who were wounded in different military and peace and order operations said, “kung bayani kami, ikaw bayani ng mga bayani.”

Jacuba related that her resurrection from the dead came when the President visted V. Luna Medical Center in August. “Four months na nagmumukmok lang ako sa kwarto nag-iisip ang hirap ng dinanas ko na nawalan ng paningin. It was the lowest moments in my life.”

But with the President’s visit, his life changed as blessings started to come.

Relating his story, he said “inisa-sa kaming kausapin ni Presidente. First time ko sanang makita ng harapan ang Presidente ng Pilipinas. First time ko sanang makita ang viral video ng pagdalaw niya, pero bulag na ako.”

Even if he did not see President Duterte, Jacuba said he felt him. In V. Luna, Jacuba hugged the President as he approached him on his bedside. Inside Malacañang’s Heroes Hall, they again hugged each other tightly like father and son, with President Duterte giving him a pat on the back, to reassure him that he will be all right.

When Jacuba spoke before his fellow soldiers and some families, he said “Salamat po kasi nirerecognize mo ako kahit san ka mapunta. Ikaw ang nagging buhay at nagtaas ng moral ng mga sundalo.”

He described the President’s act of visiting the ground troops as a sincere gesture from a leader. “Isa kang lider na sinsero,” and they are willing to give the last drop of their blood, to serve and die for the country.

President Duterte in turn said “there is life after the accident. I will reinvent you.”

“I am not a soldier, I don’t know kung saan ako papunta, pero ganito iyan. Lahat naman tayo eh, lahat tayo may sinusunod. Whether you like it or not, there is always a day for you. So kayong medyo lumusot, it means to say, fight again. But this I can assure you, my presidency will take care of you. Wala kayong dapat alalahanin.”

He encourages Jacuba to learn braille and he hopes to send him to law school, talk to San Beda to come up with a program on law for blind people.

He gave the blind soldier a braille laptop, an electric wheelchair for another and promised to give a Glock 30 firearm. This is apart from the promise to the law enforcers that they will start to receive a salary double the amount of what they are getting before the end of the year.

In his many visits to the living heroes of the country, Duterte is the first to salute, not the other way around, and retains his hand on the forehead until the soldier acknowledges, an uncommon gesture from a high ranking official, the AFP’s Commander-in-Chief, a gesture expressing that he (Duterte) recognizes the importance, respect and honor to a soldier regardless of his rank.

Singapore blasts critics calling for soft approach to war on drugs
Singapore Minister for Home Affairs and Law, K. Shanmugam lashed out at critics who advocate less punitive measures for drug related crimes. “We believe that drugs will destroy our society. With 200 million people travelling through our borders every year and given Singaporeans’ purchasing power, a ‘soft approach will mean our country will be washed over with drugs.” Shanmugam said.

The Minister’s statement was made while addressing a special three-day session of the 193-nation General Assembly called by Colombia, Guatemala and Mexico to discuss the global was on drugs, which Latin American countries say has failed. The occasion is the first major U.N. review of the issues since 1998.

Known as a discipline-oriented country, Singapore has been known to impose strict penalties even for the most venial offenses. It is one of the countries which adopt a hard line stance against drugs along with China, Thailand, Iran and Russia.

Unlike other countries which have opted to legalize certain drugs or designated areas where drugs can legally be bought or sold, Singapore implemented no such policies. Shanmugam insists that Singapore’s toughness towards drug-related crimes have yielded positive results despite American and European claims that harsh penalties including death are futile.

“Singapore is relatively drug-free, and the drug situation is under control. There are no drug havens, no no-go zones, no drug production centers, no needle exchange programs.” Shanmugam said.

Singapore’s drug offenders have been decreasing annually from a rate of 6,000 arrests per year since the 1990s, the figure has dropped to some 3,000. Roughly 80 percent of prisoners in Singapore jails are incarcerated for drug-related offenses.

Shanmugam’s statement was carried by international wire agency Reuters.

President Rodrigo Duterte agrees with this heavy-handed approach in the war against illegal drugs. With over 600,000 who voluntarily surrendered and roughly 3 million suspected addicts nationwide, the drug problem simply has got to be stopped and the apparatus destroyed. “The government will compromise the next generation if this administration cannot stop the drug menace.” Duterte said, (AAA//LTA/PND)

Duterte, Misuari to discuss peace in Mindanao
President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday revealed that he called on Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) chairman Nur Misuari for possible talk of the peace process in Mindanao as he ordered law enforcers to hold the serving of his warrant of arrest.

In their telephone conversation Tuesday night, the President said that Misuari opted to meet him in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia with the presence of the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC).

“Nag-usap kami kagabi . Gusto niya (Misuari) sa Kuala Lumpur, ” the President said after meeting with Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA).

“Nur, I have no intention of detaining you or placing you in the custody of the government. You can simply walk out there, ask any soldier and police to escort you. Kung saan ako, mag-usap tayo,” Duterte said.

Emphasizing the years of armed conflict in Jolo which is ongoing, President Duterte said: “Sayang ‘yung pera, sayang ‘yung bala. Ipatay mo rin sa kapwa mo Pilipino. Kung mga komunista pumayag na, baka dito sa panahon ko, kung maawa si Allah, eh ‘di meron tayong magandang kinabukasan.”

To pave the way of their meeting , President has (ordered) lawmen not to implement the standing warrant against Misuari.

“All I have to do is to not implement it against him because if you arrest Misuari, you place him under the custody of the police diyan sa Crame and he dies for whatever reason, kompormiso na tayo. Mahirapan na tayo,” the President said, emphasizing that the ongoing government action in battle-torn Jolo is a “punitive action” against lawless elements.

“He’s the only known leader who has the influence and the structure. Nobody else. While dito sa kabila, there’s Murad and Jafaar and the Central Committee of the Bangsamoro, MNLF (Moro National Liberation Front), ”Duterte said, adding “I can go to him, I can go to Jolo if he wants. Or if he wants somebody there, they can bring him back to Davao City or in Manila. He can be my guest in Malacañang, in the People’s Palace, and we can talk there for a while.”

President Duterte openly asks rebel groups in the country to meet with the government to settle differences and end fighting. The peace negotiations with the CPP/NPA/NDF has pushed through with Chairman Jose Maria Sison in the forefront and hopes to start the talks with the Moro rebels. (PPA//LTA/PND)

PRRD salutes soldiers killed in action vs. ASG
ZAMBOANGA CITY — President Rodrigo R. Duterte paid tribute to the 15 military men who died for the Filipino nation during an encounter with the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in Patikul, Sulu last Monday, while the country was commemorating National Heroes’ Day.

The slain troops were part of the 21st and 35th infantry battalions conducting pursuit and blocking operations who encountered some 120 ASG members led by Radullan Sahiron.

PRRD on Wednesday visited the wake of the heroic soldiers at the Western Mindanao Command (WesMinCom) gymnasium.

He shared the grief of the soldiers’ families and assured them of government support such as jobs for the widows, free basic education for the children, and automatic enrolment in the state-run 4Ps or conditional cash transfer program.

At the same time, the President lamented the costs of terrorism being waged by the ASG. “Sayang ang gastos sa bala at armor na walang kakwenta-kwenta,” he said.

PRRD then proceeded to the WesMinCom’s Camp Navarro General Hospital and later to the Cuidad Medical Center, where he was mobbed by adoring crowds chanting “Duterte! Duterte!”

He conducted the hospital visits to comfort the soldiers wounded in action, who are now confined at the two major medical centers in Zamboanga City. (JAG/LTA/PND)

PRRD gives immediate economic, educational assistance to 128 repatriated OFWS
President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered government agencies handling the concerns of the Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW) to give an immediate livelihood and educational assistance to the 128 repatriated workers who arrived at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA)Terminal 2 from Al Khobar, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on Wednesday.

The President’s order was given to help the repatriates survive as they start a new life in the country.

President Duterte led government officials in greeting the OFWs whom considered as modern day heroes.

“Welcome to your country,” the President said.

The overseas workers who arrived on Monday morning after a grueling 15 hour flight, were obviously overwhelmed and teary eyed as they were personally received by the President at the arrival area of the immigration in NAIA.

Aside from the livelihood package, the President vowed to give each of the workers P 5,000 cash assistance.

He assured them that his administration through his Cabinet members Foreign Affairs Secretary Perfecto Yasay Jr. and Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello, will help in claiming their back wages and separation pays.

He also told them that their present economic condition allows them to enroll in the government’s 4Ps program adding that he has poured millions of pesos to the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI ) if they want to put up small business through the agency’s Small Medium Enterprises program.

Duterte also mentioned of the government’s anti drug campaign and advised not to take drugs.

He also announced that he shall be establishing an OFW Bank to sustain the government’s financial support to the OFWs who contribute a chunk to the country’s economy.

“Magtatayo ako ng bangko [for] overseas workers, inyo talaga. Kami ang magbigay ng kapital pero para diretso na pati inyo ang bangko para madali,” Duterte said.

He also said the country is doing well in terms of economy. “We are not really exceeding the expectations, but we are on target sa ating growth. We have hit a phenomenal of 7, but it’s not something to crow about, we have to do more,”

“We are not so bad actually, okay naman ang ekonomiya natin. Maghintay-hintay lang kayo—Bigyan niyo lang ako ng konting panahon. Aayusin ko lang and ekonomiya, may opportunity for you to work here,” he added.

The President told the OFWs that upon hearing of their plight, he wanted to fly and see them to personally supervise their repatriation, but was advised otherwise. He also expressed sadness over the reported death of two OFWs.

He also said that the government has the resources to help the OFWs encountering problems and he will see to it that help will come to the sector. (PPA//LMG/LTA/PND)