I definitely agree with Mar Roxas that no one has the right to kill anybody and that the fate of people should be decided according to the law. The death penalty has been abolished and no one has the right to arbitrarily reinstate it.
The problem is that while the message is correct, it is being delivered by the wrong messenger.
People who support Mayor Rodrigo Duterte do so because of a perceived collapse of law and order and the administration of justice.
They are rightfully skeptical and dismissive of Roxas because as DILG (Department of the Interior and Local Government) chief, he did nothing to prevent the deterioration of the peace and order situation.
In fact, they see him as part of the problem, having meekly acquiesced while his subordinate, former Philippine National Police Chief Alan Purisima, engaged in corrupt practices for which he was indicted by the Ombudsman and even denied the existence of a crime wave.
He is seen as having simply swallowed his principles as a good Liberal Party boy as the President engaged in double standards, using Daang Matuwid to go after his enemies, while protecting cronies like Budget Secretary Butch Abad, author of the scandalous Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP).
Mar is also seen as a marshmallow, who simply swallowed his pride and did not even venture a squeak of protest when the President kept him completely out of the decision-making loop in the Mamasapano raid despite the fact that he was supposed to be on top of police operations.
You need a tough cookie, a proven fighter for human rights, not a marshmallow, to take on a gunslinger like Duterte. – Rappler.com
Walden Bello is a sociology and public administration professor at the University of the Philippines-Diliman. He used to be Akbayan Party-list Representative in the 16th Congress until he resigned last March. A known critic of the current administration, he is now running as an independent senatorial candidate.