Summary of statements released by alleged narco-politicians on Duterte’s list

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Duterte names alleged narco-politicians
Duterte announces the names of alleged narco-politicians on Sunday 7 Auguest 2016 (Photo screengrab: Presidential Communications / Radio Television Malacañang)

Hours after President Rodrigo Duterte publicly announced in Davao City the list of suspected drug personalities, several of the people whose names were included already expressed their denial and proclamations of innocence before the public.

The following are released statements of the several suspected mayors and government officials and all were addressed to the president and to their supporters:

We have gathered these on the day before the president’s 24-hour deadline.

Mayor Marjorie Salazar (Lasam, Cagayan province)

Response: DENIED the allegations

Mayor Salazar on Sunday went directly to the regional head of Philippine National Police (PNP) to report and seek the office’s protection.

Although the mayor did not answer the questions from the press, she was firm in his stand that she is innocent.

The regional police director of Cagayan Valley, Chief Superintendent Gilbert Sosa who welcomed Salazar mentioned that, “When she found out about it, she called me to present herself. Then I asked guidance from the head office.”

The mayor might report to the Manila office on Monday and fearing for her life, asked for security assistance from the said PNP office.

Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog (Iloilo City) 

Response: DENIED the allegations

In a press conference in the city hall of his town in Iloilo, Mayor Mabilog described the situation as “unfortunate and disconcerting” that his name was included on Duterte’s list of public officials linked to illegal drugs.

It can be remembered that the mayor is now on his last term after winning for the third time in the recent elections. He added that he wants a speedy investigation so that he can clarify the issue and clear his name.

In short, he denied the allegations that he is involved in such illegal activities. He also added that he never protected anyone in the drug trade neither he used illegal substance.

The mayor did not specify if he will indeed report to the assigned office withing the 24-hour deadline.

Mayor Cipriano ‘Goto’ Violago (San Rafael, Bulacan)

Response: DENIED the allegations

Mayor Goto Violago insisted that he was and will never be involved in the illegal drug trade. In an interview with a national radio station, he admitted that he broke down and cried especially when he heard his name from the list during Duterte’s enumeration.

He added that what happened stressed him out so bad that he felt very weak.

“Iyung isip ko, ganoon din po. Hirap na hirap po ang loob ko,” added Violago.

(Mentally, I also felt weak and stressed out. It was really hard for me.”

The mayor also suspected that his name’s inclusion on the list is a part of a bigger plan to ruin his name and reputation as a public servant.

He also questioned the validity and credibility of the intelligence report received by the president.

Nonetheless, it was reported earlier today that the mayor voluntarily reported to the authorities to respect the investigation process.

Mayor Marino “Boking” Morales (Mabalacat, Pampanga)

Response: DENIED the allegations

In a video posted on his Facebook page, mayor Morales denied that he is protecting drug personalities. He also said that he is not connected to any drug syndicate.

The mayor expressed his willingness to undergo necessary investigations in order to preserve his integrity and clear his name.

He assured the president that he is one with the government in their war against illegal drugs. He also mentioned that he will report to the office stated by Duterte so that he can get a chance to explain his side.

Mayor Reynaldo Parojinog Sr (Ozamiz, Misamis Occidental)

Response: DENIED the allegations

The Ozamis mayor promised to his supporters that he will do anything in his power to prove the allegations false. In his case, he is planning to report to the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) as ordered by Duterte during his speech.

In a statement, the mayor expressed his disappointed when he heard that he was on the list, too: “My name has been dragged despite 15 years of efforts to transform our city. You know all about this, we have been fighting drugs.”

He emphasized that he is on the president’s side but he also assured that he will follow the legal process to prove his innocence.

Mayor Hector Ong and ex-mayor Madeleine Ong (Laong, Northern Samar)

Response: DENIED the allegations

Both mayors where included on the list but denied the allegations saying that they are  “anti-illegal drugs crusaders.”

Mayor Hector Ong assured that he will clear his name with the faith that the due process will be followed.  He emphasized that they are public servants and will not in any way, support or protect people involved in illegal drug trade.

The Ong mayors is set to report to Camp Crame in Quezon City but stressed that the reports received by the president about their involvement should be thoroughly reviewed.

Mayor Michael ‘Mike’ Rama (former mayor, Cebu City)

Response: DENIED the allegations

The ex-mayor was saddened by the events that happened during Duterte’s speech in Davao last night. In response, he posted a Facebook status through his page, saying that he would give his full cooperation and obey the authorities.

He also added that despite what happened, he will offer his “unwavering support” to the president’s narcowar.

The mayor added that he and his family have always been good citizens of the country and have been very clear when it comes to their stand against the illegal drug trade in his city.

“May justice prevail and the truth set us free.”, the former mayor concluded.

Judge Roberto Navidad (Regional Trial Court 32 in Calbayog City, Samar)

Response: DECEASED, Family DENIED the allegations

It was a long list of both former and current political figures but one of the names enumerated by the president belonged to an already dead person.

According to reports, Judge Navidad was killed on Jan. 15, 2008 while inside his own car. It was said that he bought his medicine in Calbayog when the killing happened.

The killer of Judge Navidad remains at large and even after 8 years, no one was able to identify who the culprit was.

However, the new shocked Judge Navidad’s family.

His nephew, Elias Navidad Acosta denied the allegations saying that, “that is a big lie. The reason why he was shot to death was because he fought with the drug lords in Calbayog City.”

Duterte set a 24-hour deadline for all the public officials as well as military and police officers mentioned in his speech to surrender to the authorities or else face more serious consequences.

 

This is a developing story.