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Gov’t not remiss on drug deaths — Palace

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By Genalyn Kabiling

The government has not been remiss in investigating killings associated with the war on illegal drugs, Malacañang insisted on Wednesday after a petition was filed before the Supreme Court on the matter.

Presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella said the Department of Justice and the Philippine National Police are prepared to respond to a petition seeking to resolve the drug-related deaths.

Presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella (RENE LUMAWAG/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)

Presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella
(RENE LUMAWAG/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)

“Concerned agencies, such as the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Philippine National Police (PNP), welcome the petition and would respond to the petition filed at the Supreme Court,” Abella said.

He said authorities follow “protocols and procedures” during police operations and conduct investigations in the event of drug-related killings.

“Drug-related killings form part of cases under investigation by the police, alongside murder and homicide cases,” he said.

He also assured that the public is given access to the results of the investigation. Some details however are only released when such information would not compromise the investigation and follow-up operations, Abella said.

A group of lawyers recently called on the Supreme Court to direct the PNP chief Director Gen. Ronald dela Rosa, Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II, and Commission on Human Rights Chief Chito Gascon to investigate the cases of alleged summary killings associated with the President’s anti-drug campaign.

The petitioners argued that the respondents have allegedly failed to perform their duty to resolve such killings and avoid the unnecessary loss of lives during the drug crackdown.

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