Drugs, communism slowing down PH economy: PRRD

Drugs, communism slowing down PH economy: PRRD

MANILA – The Philippine economy’s growth is losing steam because of the perennial problems of illegal drugs and communism in the country, President Rodrigo Duterte said on Tuesday.

In a speech delivered in Batangas City, the President admitted that he was having difficulty in improving the country’s economy because he was spending most of his time addressing the rampant narcotics trade and the decades-long insurgency.

Duterte said the only way to further boost the economy is to neutralize all the big-time drug offenders, as well as the members of the communist’s armed wing, the New People’s Army (NPA).

“I cannot improve the standing of our economy if marami akong kalaban, itong mga droga at itong NPA (if we have so many enemies, the drug personalities and NPA insurgents),” he said during the situation briefing on the effects of the Taal Volcano’s eruption.

Since Duterte assumed office in July 2016 until Nov. 30, 2019, a total of 151,601 legitimate anti-drug operations led to the arrest of 220,728 drug offenders and the deaths of 5,552 drug suspects.

In his speech, Duterte reiterated that Batangas remains to be a “red spot” because it still serves as a “sanctuary for a drug personality.”

Lashing out anew at drug personalities, Duterte said it would be better to “kill” them since they are already considered as “useless idiots.”

Drugs will destroy my country. I will not allow it, at least not during my term. Drugs will kill the youth of the land,” he said.

“A good number of them would be, alam mo ‘pag nabuang sa droga, nabuang na talaga iyan (you know, they will get insane because of drugs). Wala na (They will be useless),” the President added.

Meanwhile, NPA insurgents continued to launch attacks against government troops, even after the President in November last year expressed openness to the possible resumption of moribund talks with communists’ political wing, the National Democratic Front (NDF).

Duterte also took a swipe at NPA rebels, whom he branded as “idiots” for thinking that they can control the entire country.

“As long as the Filipinos are jobless and we cannot improve the country, (that is) because the country is full of idiots who think that they can take over government. Napakabobo naman nitong NPA na ‘to. (NPA members are stupid),” he said.

“Gulo ng gulo, hindi naman nila kaya to take over this country (They only sow chaos. They cannot even take over this country). They cannot even occupy barangay (a village for) 24 hours. Sabi ko sa sundalo, patayin mo na iyan. Walang silbi iyan (I told the soldiers to kill them because they are useless),” he added.

The CPP-NPA has been listed as a terrorist group by the Philippines, the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, and New Zealand.

Apart from illegal drugs and insurgency, Duterte also fumed over the rising rape cases in the country, especially in Quezon.

The increase in rape incidents prompted the President to order the police to track down the supposed “serial rapist” behind rape incidents in Quezon.

His order came following the recent arrest of a suspect behind the rape and killing of an eight-year-old girl in Candelaria, Quezon.

“It has become intolerable, the number (of rape cases). It’s not comfortable to me anymore so we have to do something about it,” Duterte said.  Ruth Abbey Gita-Carlos /PNA – northboundasia.com