Mayor Espinosa pleads to son: Surrender, Duterte will help us

Bea Cupin
Mayor Espinosa pleads to son: Surrender, Duterte will help us
Rolando Espinosa cries as he calls on son Kerwin to give up

MANILA, Philippines – “Dong…surrender nalang ta (My son…let’s surrender).”

If on Tuesday, August 2, Albuera Mayor Rolando Espinosa seemed confident and even comfortable at Camp Crame, it was a different story on Wednesday, August 3.

An emotional Espinosa shed tears on Wednesday as he called on son Kerwin to surrender amid a standing “shoot on sight” order against him.  

The father and son have been in the headlines the past days after President Rodrigo Duterte called on them to surrender because of their supposed ties to the illegal drug trade.

If they did not surrender and chose to fight back, Duterte said he would issue a “shoot on sight” order. There are, however, no standing warrants or cases against either father or son over their alleged ties to illegal drugs.

Dong kung makita ko nimo karon sa tv… nag-antos kog maayo. Surrender nalang ta. Surrender na lang,” said Espinosa, barely fighting back tears.

(My son, if you see me on TV now… I’m having a hard time. But let’s surrender. Let’s surrender.)

He added: “Kay total, tabangan ta sa atong presidente og sa atoang chief of staff General Ronald dela rosa. Akong pasalig, mu surrender ka tabangan ka nila.”

(The President and the PNP chief will help us. I’m confident that if you surrender, they will help you.)

Espinosa on Tuesday surrendered to Philippine National Police Chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa because he feared for his life. His son, however, is still at large.

Hours after his surrender, Albuera police killed 6 men during a supposed encounter right outside Albuera’s home. The major, through his lawyer, however, deny any ties to the yet to be identified men.

Espinosa went to the PNP’s Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) headquarters on Wednesday to execute a judicial affidavit.

The mayor’s lawyer denied any ties to illegal drugs, contrary to the information of Duterte himself. Dela Rosa earlier said that Espinosa was part of a list of drug lords and protectors.

It’s his son, Kerwin, who is allegedly involved in the illegal drugs trade in Eastern Visayas. –

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Bea Cupin

Bea is a senior multimedia reporter who covers national politics. She's been a journalist since 2011 and has written about Congress, the national police, and the Liberal Party for Rappler.