What if Duterte did not go into war against illegal drugs?

Duterte Campaign

What if President Rodrigo Duterte did not go into war against illegal drugs in the Philippines? What if he did not actually try to fulfill his promise during elections – that he would suppress illegal drugs, criminality and corruption in the country in 6 months? What if he had just, like the previous government administrations, relaxed or kept silent on the matter of illegal drug trade in our nation?

Let’s open our mind and explore the possible consequences if Duterte did not actually walk his talk and go into war against the drug pushers, drug lords and their protectors.

1. Duterte would have an easier life as a president.
President Duterte wouldn’t need to clash with the dangerous drug lords and their powerful coddlers. Our 71-year old head of state wouldn’t have to be exhausted with his job. He could have enjoyed better sleeps at night and wouldn’t need to put his and his family’s lives in danger. He could’ve enjoyed a billion-worth of gifts from drug lords for not meddling in their business.

2. There would be no alarming number of alleged extrajudicial killings.
1,011 suspected criminals would not be killed by the PNP during their operations. There would have been no mysterious 1,391 deaths that would be under investigation as of this date. One top news company would never come up with their infamous “kill list”.

3. Innocent lives would not become casualties of war.
There would have been no collateral damage caused by the government’s intensive war against illegal drugs. Innocent children like Althea and Danica would have been alive today.

4. 686,800 drug users and pushers would not have surrendered to the PNP.
Based on PNP’s latest update, 638,362 illegal drug users and 48,534 pushers have already surrendered to the authorities. If Duterte has not implemented an intensive campaign against illegal drugs, these users and pushers would not have feared and be pressured to surrender to the Philippine National Police. They would not be motivated to change their lives for good.

5. 12,500 cops allegedly involved in drugs wouldn’t be exposed by the PNP.
According to the PNP, around 12,500 cops have been found to be linked to illegal drugs after they were subjected to background investigation and drug tests. If the PNP did not start their campaign, these cops would have continued their illegal and unethical activities.

6. Duterte would not announce a list of alleged narco-politicians.
The suspected narco-politicians in Duterte’s list would have been living a quite life today. They could have preserved their reputations rather than be put to shame.

7. The convicted drug lords would still be enjoying a high living today in jail.
The high-profile or VIP inmates at New Bilibid Prison would still be enjoying with their Jacuzzi and sauna facilities today. They could have freely continued their business operations inside and out of the prison.

8. The CHR would not be too busy.
The Commission on Human Rights would not have a difficult job investigating a disturbing number of alleged extra judicial killings.

9. Senator Leila De Lima would not be mad.
Well, she’s mad at what’s happening right now. I don’t know exactly why. Can you tell us?

10. The illegal drug trade would continue to prosper in the Philippines.
The drug lords would never be worried about losing their business. The drug lord coddlers or narco-politicians would have continued enjoying their share from the drug lords.

11. Corrupt politicians would keep receiving drug money.
They could have received more money from the drug lords to fund their political campaign for the next elections and have continued robbing our tax money.

12. Drug users in the Philippines could have reached 3 million today.
According to the Dangerous Drug Board of the Philippines, there was an estimated 1.3 million illegal drug users in the Philippines as of 2012. With the quick growing power of the drug personalities in the country, that number could have doubled today.

13. 100% of barangays in Metro Manila would’ve been affected by drugs today.
Based on the report by the PDEA, 92% of Metro Manila barangays and almost 21% of barangays nationwide are drug affected. Had Duterte ignored the drug trade in our country, all of Metro Manila’s barangays would have been affected by drugs and about one third or even half of barangays across the country would now have drug cases.

14. Families and relationships would continue to be ruined.
More parents, spouses, siblings and children would have been affected by illegal drugs, causing more families to be broken and dreams for a brighter future to be shattered.

15. Drug-related crimes would continue growing.
According to the PNP, “index crime is down 31% in July 2016 from July 2015”. Had the government failed to implement their campaign against drugs, drug addicts and pushers would have continued to be fearless. Robbery, theft, rape, homicide, murders and other drug-related crimes would have increased in number, while the ability of our policemen to solve crimes would have dropped. Filipinos would never be safe inside and outside their homes.

16. Duterte would have used another strategy to suppress drugs in Philippines.
Rather than have an aggressive campaign, he could have implemented a mild and gentle anti-drug campaign. President Duterte, PNP chief Director General Ronald Bato dela Rosa and the rest of the team could have opted to travel across the Philippines, lecturing, educating and giving inspirational talks to Filipinos so they would not be tempted to use dangerous drugs. Will it really work? What do you think?

17. He would have focused on other campaigns.
Instead of concentrating on waging war against illegal drugs, he would have chosen to focus on the development of our economic policies so we could have a higher GDP growth. Moreover, he could have also concentrated on building stronger ties with our foreign partners, including the United Nations and the United States of America. We could have presented a better image internationally just like what the previous administrations had done…

… while the Filipino people at the bottom are suffering from drug-related crimes and poverty.

So are you in favor with Duterte’s intensive war against illegal drugs in the Philippines or not?


About the Author: Victorino Q. Abrugar is a 35 year old Yolanda survivor from Tacloban City. Vic is a retired Certified Public Accountant, a blogger, a public speaker and an entrepreneur. He’s a co-founder of a start-up digital marketing corporation which operates a few community-driven new media sites, including Reporter.PH.

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