Senate bets on drugs: Solve poverty or kill drug lords in Luneta?
MANILA, Philippines – Three senatorial candidates were asked how they would solve the drug problem in the country during the CNN Philippines' senatorial debate on Sunday, December 2.
Here's how the candidates responded:
Ronald dela Rosa, former Philippine National Police chief
A Duterte appointee, Dela Rosa thinks the campaign against illegal drugs should continue and that death penalty must be reinstated. He wants drug lords shot in Rizal Park, ironically where Philippine national hero Jose Rizal was executed.
"Sabi ko let's try, i-reimpose natin itong death penalty. Tingan natin, barilin natin sa Luneta itong isa, dalawa, tatlo, apat na drug lord, tingnan natin kung maghahakot pa sila ng drugs dito sa Pilipinas," he said.
(I said, let's try to reimpose the death penalty. Let's see, if we shoot them in Luneta, one, two, three, four drug lords, let's see if they'll still bring drugs to the Philippines.)
Gary Alejano, Magdalo representative, former soldier
Alejano, a fierce Duterte critic, says he thinks it's necessary to end the drug problem but not through the bloody "war" now being waged by the administration.
He said the best way to address the spread of illegal drugs is for the government to lift more Filipinos from poverty.
"Kung nilulutas ang isang gulo at gulo din ang sagot…ang resulta nito ay gulo din. Dapat ang ating solusyon dito ay kaayusan," he said. (If violence is used to solve violence... the result is also violence. The solution should be order.)
Chel Diokno, human rights lawyer
A candidate of the Liberal Party, Diokno said the best way to solve the drug problem is to fix the country's slow and corrupt justice system. He explained this in a previous Rappler Talk interview.
He also said the ongoing "drug war" is only doing more harm than good.
"Ang problema sa war on drugs, mas malala pa ang gamot sa sakit." (The problem with the war on drugs is, the medicine is more harmful than the sickness.)
The CNN Philippines senatorial debate is ongoing as of posting time. – Rappler.com