Presidential aspirant and Senator Manny Pacquiao vowed that there would be no extrajudicial killings (EJKs) under his administration if elected president in 2022.
In a statement on International Human Rights Day, Pacquiao said that he was standing by the 1987 Constitution, which said: “The State values the dignity of every human person and guarantees full respect for human rights.”
“Our fundamental law expressly provides that the government shall allow freedom of speech, of expression, or of the press, or the right to peaceably assemble for redress of grievances,” the boxer-turned-politician said.
The presidential aspirant committed to pursue a strong and unrelenting campaign against illegal drugs and criminality in a “right way” and without resorting to “unnecessary violence especially EJKs.”
“I will uphold the right of the people to information of matters of public concern,” Pacquiao said.
“This is an essential component of good governance that requires transparency and accountability on the part of those who hold public office, especially the president,” he added.
Pacquiao said the government should invest on modern crime fighting tools such as police helicopters with thermal scanners and night vision capabilities, body cameras, surveillance cameras, and biometric devices including facial recognition devices.
Apart from Pacquiao, presidential aspirant and Senator Panfilo Lacson also said there would be no “tokhang” in his anti-drug campaign should he win in Eleksyon 2022.
He also vowed to implement a policy of discipline and use of body cameras among officers of the Philippine National Police (PNP) to prevent EJK and other abuses by rogue law enforcers.
The war against illegal drugs was one of the campaign promises by Duterte. He vowed to eradicate illegal drugs within three to six months since he assumed the presidency in 2016.
Oplan Tokhang, the police’s knock-and-plead strategy of convincing suspected drug personalities to stop using illegal drugs, became controversial as critics of the government claimed left over 20,000 suspects dead.
Authorities, however, placed the fatalities at over 6,000. They also insist that the suspects were killed while fighting it out with responding law enforcers. -NB, GMA News