war on drugs

Marcos: Drug war continues but ‘slightly different’

Bea Cupin
Marcos: Drug war continues but ‘slightly different’

Crime scenes after a buy-bust operation in Taguig City on July 28, 2016.

Rappler

‘Let us adjust our focus,’ Marcos recalls telling the police force

NEW YORK, USA – President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said on Friday, September 23, that while his government “cannot stop the drug war,” the focus would be more on prevention and rehabilitation rather than law enforcement.

“I think we have found – [and] it is certainly my view – that enforcement, which has been the part of the drug war that has been most vigorously pursued by President [Rodrigo] Duterte only gets you so far,” he said.

Marcos was referring to his predecessor’s bloody and ruthless “war on drugs” that mostly targeted the poor.

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For Marcos, the government’s focus should veer less towards law enforcement and focus more on prevention and helping heal those who are already addicted to illegal subtances.

“We are trying to learn which are the best methods now to pull our victims – [because] really is what they are – pull them out of that culture and to help them start again and do live a good life as good and contributing members of society,” added Marcos.

Months earlier, in July, Interior Secretary Benhur Abalos had also said that there would be no letup in the war against drugs. “The war against drugs will be as intensive as before on the basis of my oath as a public official in accordance with the Constitution,” Abalos said then.

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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.