MANILA — Drug-trafficking is the “most dreaded evil” and should definitely be considered a heinous crime, Malacañang said on Tuesday.
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said drug-trafficking should be on the list of heinous crimes after the Senate approved a bill creating separate facilities for heinous crime convicts.
“It’s the most dreaded, evil that has descended on all cities of the world. It has caused dysfunctional families, it has destroyed families,” Panelo said in a media interview with reporters in Malacañang.
“If it’s not more than, it’s equally the same,” he added.
On Monday, Senate Bill No. 1055 was approved with 21 affirmative votes and zero negative votes during the Senate’s session.
If signed into law, the proposed penitentiary “shall be put up preferably within a military establishment or in an island separate from the mainland. The location should be in a secured and remote area to cut the inmates’ contact from the outside world.”
There will be three heinous crime facilities established in the islands of Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.
The facilities will have modern surveillance cameras, high-tech information and security system capable of 24/7 monitoring of prisoners, and complicated security features on locks, doors, and perimeters.
Heinous crimes under Republic Act No. 7659 include importation, manufacture, sale of illegal drugs, kidnapping and serious illegal detention, destructive arson, rape, treason, piracy and mutiny on the high seas in Philippine waters, qualified bribery, parricide, murder, infanticide, robbery with violence against or intimidation of persons.
In his fourth State of the Nation Address in July, Duterte renewed his request for Congress to reinstate the death penalty for heinous crimes related to drugs and plunder.
“I respectfully request Congress to reinstate the death penalty for heinous crimes related to drugs, as well as plunder,” Duterte said.
“I am aware that we still have a long way to go in our fight against this social menace. Let the reason why I advocate the imposition of the death penalty for crimes related to illegal drugs,” he added.
During his 2016 presidential campaign, Duterte promised to end illegal drugs “within three to six months.”
However, he admitted that the Philippines has degenerated into a “narcotic country” due to the extent of the drug problem. Azer Parrocha / PNA – northboundasia.com