editorial.9.13

The Duterte cabinet in a previous meeting.


It has always been our position in this newspaper that it is best to observe from the outside than from the inside.

Thus, that’s how we arrive at our objective and keen observations about obtaining conditions in the Philippines, which, are of interest to our readers.

Barely 14 months in office, the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte, including his remaining supporters, are showing signs of confusion bordering on panic.

Never before since Mr. Duterte assumed the presidency has there been an upsurge of angry, sarcastic and non-supportive comments from netizens, who are also Filipino citizens, on virtually every related issue or news that gets posted in local newspapers or in social media since the death of Kian Loyd delos Santos.

Anti-Duterte criticisms from outside the Philippines are also on the rise.

The Philippines has landed among countries with “darker and more dangerous” human rights situations, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein reported on Monday.

Describing the Duterte bloody anti-drug campaign, the Harvard International Review published in its latest quarterly from Harvard University:

“The extraordinary brutality of the Duterte drug war is undeniable. Many of the victims are found in back alleys or street corners wrapped in packing tape, their bodies bullet-ridden or bearing stab wounds and other signs of torture.”

A case has been filed and pending before the International Criminal Court against Mr. Duterte for his alleged Davao Death Squad and the supposed extrajudicial killings under his administration.

A big demonstration of peaceful and concerned citizens organized by the Movement Against Tyranny (reminds us of Movement for Free Philippines of Manglapus in the 70s) is set on Sept. 21.

A group of officers in the military organization is supposedly against Mr. Duterte’s EJKs, anti-democratic actions and decisions, and anti-U.S. but pro-China and pro-Russia policies.

The Catholic Church in the Philippines, through its courageous and outspoken bishops has been more vocal in its criticisms of supposed extrajudicial killings, especially after the virtual execution of three teenagers, Kian delos Santos, Carlo Arnaiz and Reynaldo de Guzman, reportedly by members of the Philippine National Police and unknown gunmen.

Adding insult to an already injured citizenry is the accusation by Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV that a son and son-in-law of Mr. Duterte are involved in the smuggling into the country (from China) of P6.4 billion worth of illegal drugs, and that Paolo Duterte is an alleged member of an international crime syndicate.

Filipinos are demanding that Mr. Duterte’s justice secretary should resign.

The people are also up in arms against Pantaleon Alvarez and the 119 congressmen who approved a P1,000 budget for the Commission on Human Rights, a constitutional creation tasked with investigating violators of human rights.

A few days ago, Mr. Duterte sounding sad, said he wanted to quit the presidency because he was no longer happy and was no longer at peace.

Is he beginning to get hounded by the estimated 13,000 poor suspected drug traffickers, including innocent children and teenagers, who were killed by his police officers and unknown killers emboldened by his KILL, KILL, KILL speeches and encouraging promises that no policeman who kills during drug raid will go to jail?

And if any policeman is found guilty in the killing fields, he would grant pardon?

We want to conclude with a Tagalog saying, “Ang pagsisisi ay nasa bandang huli.”

(Regretfulness is almost always at the end.)

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