Press Release
August 8, 2016


Senator Richard J. Gordon yesterday reiterated that it is high time that the Philippine National Police conduct an investigation on the extrajudicial killings in President Rodrigo Duterte's brutal war on illegal drugs.

Gordon pointed out that under Republic Act (RA) 8551 or the Philippine National Police Reform and Reorganization Act of 1998, the PNP's Internal Affairs Service (IAS) can automatically investigate incidents where police personnel discharge a firearm.

Last month, the senator pointed out that Section 39 of the act states that the IAS can conduct motu proprio investigations on incidents where a police personnel discharges a firearm; and incidents where death, serious physical injury, or any violation of human rights occurred in the conduct of a police operation.

"We do not countenance the killings but there is a rule here. The police or the PNP must conduct its own probe and there's a law that says that. Let the law do its job. The law must be utilized and the public should understand that the drug pushers are usually armed and usually high on drugs which alters their judgment. Therefore, the police have to protect themselves and the citizenry. However, the police, in performing their duties, should respect the right of the citizenry," he said.

Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Ismael Sueno has ordered Director General Ronald "Bato" dela Rosa, PNP chief to look immediately into the deaths of hundreds of drug suspects during law-enforcement operations and in almost nightly attacks in slums across the country that have been blamed on so-called vigilantes. He also ordered the PNP Internal Affairs Service to investigate police operations that had led to violations of human rights. It is the investigation conducted by ias to determine if the killings are justifiable as self-defense.

Gordon, head of the Blue Ribbon Committee, also maintained in an interpolation in the Senate last week that the internal affairs service of the PNP, not the Senate, should conduct the investigation.

When he was elected as Mayor of Olongapo City, Gordon transformed what was then known as the Sin City into a Model City, defined by its cleanliness, and the discipline of its residents. Gordon is also the father of the Peoples' Law Enforcement Board, which empowers the people against abusive and erring policemen.

Inquirer monitoring showed that 660 drug suspects have been killed between July 1 and Aug. 4. Of the killings, 436 were by police and 224 by vigilantes. In July alone, 596 were killed, 196 of them by vigilantes. The other 400 were killed by police.

"Let the IAS do its job," Gordon said.

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