Which side are we on?

I am confused.
When Iloilo City was hit by a spate of murders by gunmen riding-in-tandem, apparently upon orders of drug syndicates and their corrupt protectors, there was no outcry.
I was even sued by Jed Patrick Mabilog for libel for labelling him as a crime protector.
And now La Salle and Ateneo communities are being agitated to wear black to protest the so-called extra judicial killings!
Which side are we on?
I know there are vigilante killings. But these have been going on for decades now. It’s not as if Duterte gave birth to it.
But most of the deaths in the war against illegal drugs resulted from legitimate operations.
To prove that legitimacy, we just need to count the number of PNP and PDEA agents who have died in the line of fire.
Those guys who continue to peddle shabu and other illicit drugs are desperate. They will kill to keep on with their trade. They know the authorities are hot on their trail, and they will do business armed and dangerous.
The Duterte administration should not relent on its war against illegal drugs. It must keep up the momentum. This is a fight to the finish.

An enemy from within

There’s no mistaking the fact that the battle against illegal drugs is as difficult as repulsing a foreign invader, or even harder.
That’s because the enemy is hard to detect. The pusher is not just the street pug that was the stereotype in the past. Now even a public school teacher has been caught selling drugs. Barangay officials, too, have been nabbed in buy-bust operations. They are like the Vietcong whom the Americans had to fight half a century ago in the ricefields of Vietnam: by day ordinary farmers, by night fierce warriors.
We have to accept the reality that this battle can be waged in a rule of law setting. As we have seen time and again, drug lords and pushers can afford the best legal minds to defend them in court. And even in jail, they continue to run the illegal drugs trade with impunity.
For this alone, I am prepared to see President Duterte do it with brute force. Of course, he just has to be cautioned not to waste human lives. Just the same, the authorities should not hesitate to use force when it is deemed necessary.

The year of living dangerously in Iloilo City

The year of living dangerously in Iloilo City

Two persons were seriously wounded just past midnight April 27 when unidentified suspects sprayed this car with automatic gunfire just outside the Western Visayas Medical Center in Mandurriao, Iloilo City.
The car’s owner, Lino Maranon, and a companion were taken to the St. Paul’s Hospital after the ambush in the busy street just 100 meters from the Mandurriao police station.
Police sources say this is apparently the handiwork of guns-for-hire, who seem to enjoy brisk business in a city run by a mayor with close links to drug lords and criminal syndicates.
Ironically, the city mayor is the chairman of the regional peace and order council. (Photo courtesy of Aksyon Radyo Iloilo)

Heavy firepower

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City Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog is always accompanied by Armalite-wielding security men whenever he goes around the city. His favorite place to visit is Barangay Monica, City Proper where Jing Jing Espinosa plays the role of a gracious host.

TNT Libre January 31 edition highlights Jing Jing’s threat

TNT Libre January 31 edition highlights Jing Jing's threat

In a series of FB private messages and blog comments, Jing Jing Espinosa has sent a strong warning against the reportage I’ve been doing on his cases.
Jing Jing is now facing two counts of frustrated murder and one count of attempted murder for trying to kill his own uncles on June 1, 2010.
Jobless, with no legitimate business, Jing Jing has erected a 5-story residence in Barangay Monica City Proper where City Mayor Jed Patrick Escalante Mabilog is a frequent visitor.
Mabilog shrugged off Jing Jing’s dark past as a convicted killer and a reputed drug lord as irrelevant. He said he is proud of their friendship and counts Jing Jing as his number one supporter for his re election bid.

PNP Regional Office 6 asked to probe Mabilog-Espinosa friendship

Barangay tanods in Barangay Monica armed to the teeth

Barangay Tanods (village watchmen) in Barangay Monica, City Proper, Iloilo City wield high-powered rifles in this photo posted by Jing Jing Espinosa. This is the barangay where his wife is the Punong Barangay (barangay captain). Under existing laws, these barangay tanods are not authorized to carry firearms. But the law doesn’t exist in this barangay where Jing Jing Espinosa is the high lord, with Jed Patrick E. Mabilog and Jerry Trenas as his patrons.