MANILA – President Rodrigo Duterte chided human rights groups for opposing the revival of death penalty anew, saying they should switch careers if they were only good at counting the dead.
In a public address from Davao City late Monday night, Duterte said rights organizations should operate as funeral parlors if it was the only purpose they could serve.
“Napakatorpe naman nitong human rights ‘pag hindi kayo nag-ano. Ano ang ano ninyo? Magbilang lang ng patay? Eh p***** i**, ‘di maglipat kayo ng trabaho, huwag sa human rights. Punerarya kung ‘yan lang man ang trabaho ninyo (Human rights are too meek. What’s your deal? Are you just going to count the dead? You should switch careers. You shouldn’t be in human rights. You should be operating funeral parlors),” Duterte said.
Duterte lamented that drug addiction remains a “serious and grave” problem in the country yet rights groups failed to do anything or even strongly condemn the rights violated by the illegal drug problem.
He said that they should also be educating the public about the consequences of engaging in the illegal drug trade.
“What are you doing about it? At least mayroon kayong —– (you should have) you know, your advocacy. It does not begin and end in the life of a criminal. Naloko ba kayo (Are you being fooled)? It should be something like you would also do a campaign all around the Philippines warning the citizens about being killed, about being slaughtered if they do drugs. Iyan ang tama magawa ninyo (That’s the right thing to do),” he said.
If there were as many killings even after more people are educated, Duterte said they could launch investigations and file cases.
Duterte said he could not pinpoint where drugs are really from but noted that countries with problems on illegal drugs like China, Malaysia, and Indonesia all mete out capital punishment.
“Tayo lang ang Pilipinas maarte (It’s only in the Philippines that’s too picky),” he said.
Duterte said that prayers and protests apparently did nothing to help curb the illegal drug menace in the country.
“If it’s really effective, if prayers do, if the shouting inside the church, the pulpit, everywhere, kung nakakatulong, bakit po hanggang ngayon nagbabaha ng droga (If it’s really helpful, why is it still flooding with drugs)?” he said.
He also noted that illegal drugs “destroy the spirit of a nation”.
“A shabu is a shabu is a shabu,” he said.
In his fifth and penultimate State-of-the-Nation Address last July, Duterte urged Congress to reinstate the death penalty for heinous crimes including those linked to illegal drugs.
“This will not only help us deter criminality but also save our children from the dangers posed by the illegal and dangerous drugs,” Duterte said in his SONA.
Both the Senate and House of Representatives, however, vowed to prioritize measures to address the Covid-19 pandemic over deliberations on the death penalty bill.
The Commission on Human Rights said there is no compelling reason to bring back capital punishment. Azer Parrocha / PNA – northboundasia.com