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‘Despite EJK, drug war gains backing’

THE majority of the Filipinos believe that extrajudicial killings are taking place in the Duterte administration’s campaign against illegal drugs, according to the latest Pulse Asia survey.

But the same survey says there is widespread support for the government’s bloody crackdown on illegal drugs. 

In the September 2017 Ulat ng Bayan survey of 1,200 respondents, some 73 percent of those polled believe that extrajudicial killings are occurring in the conduct of the Duterte administration’s bloody war on drugs, which is six points higher compared to a similar poll in June. 

On the other hand, 20 percent of those surveyed do not believe summary killings are happening in the implementation of the anti-illegal drugs campaign, and almost one in 10 of those surveyed (7 percent) refused to answer the question.

In other developments:

•  Despite the mounting criticism of the war on illegal drugs, Philippine National Police Chief Ronald dela Rosa on Monday vowed to help the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency in the fight against illegal drugs.

At the Kamuning Bakery in Quezon City, Dela Rosa said the PNP will continue to exercise its supporting role to help PDEA fight the drug menace.

He said he was now learning to be “immune” to attacks and insults from critics.

CHOW DOWN.  PNP chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa (left) and Chief Supt.  Guillermo Lorenzo Eleazar take the line Monday as guests during the weekly Pandesal Forum with moderator Wilson Flores in Kamuning, Quezon City on the topic the administration’s anti-drug campaign. Manny Palmero

• The Commission on Human Rights on Monday praised the government decision to designate the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency as the lead agency in carrying out President Rodrigo Duterte’s campaign against illegal drugs.

“We are hopeful that professionalism will govern PDEA in implementing the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act and that the campaign against drugs will be carried out with strict adherence to the rule of law,” spokeswoman Jacqueline Ann de Guia said.

“This development is an indication that the administration is willing to listen to the public clamor for the observance of due process in its campaign against illegal drugs.”

Belief on the existence of extrajudicial deaths were highest among those in the National Capital Region (78 percent) and Balance Luzon (75 percent), while the highest movement came from Mindanao, now at 67 percent or up by 17 points since last June. Some 68 percent in the Visayas likewise believe in the occurrence of extrajudicial deaths. 

The same view is being echoed by the majorities in all classes, with 77 percent of those in class ABC believing in their occurrence followed by class D at 72 percent, and class E at 70 percent. 

Nearly all Filipinos know about the case of Kian delos Santos, who was slain by rogue cops in Caloocan City on the eve of August 16 at 94 percent, with most of them (76 percent) admitting being worried that they or a member of their family, a relative or an acquaintance may experience the same fate as Delos Santos due to the implementation of the administration’s anti-drug campaign.

Of the total figure of 76 percent, 43 percent said they were very worried about the possibility of this happening to them or someone they knew, while 34 percent were somewhat worried. Around the same percentages of those polled were either ambivalent on the matter (13 percent) or were not worried (11 percent).

More than eight in 10 of those polled, or 88 percent, said they supported the government’s war on drugs while only two percent opposed the campaign. Nine percent said they may or may not support it.

Across geographical regions, 94 percent of those surveyed in Mindanao said they were backing Duterte’s bloody anti-drug campaign followed by Luzon (88 percent), the Visayas (85 percent) and the National Capital Region (84 percent).

The campaign likewise enjoyed an 89-percent support among the Class D, 88 percent among the Class E and 80 percent among those in the Class ABC. 

Topics: Filipinos , Extrajudicial killings , Duterte administration , War on drugs , Pulse Asia survey
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