MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine National Police (PNP) will conform with whatever decision the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) will come up with on furnishing Vice President Leni Robredo a copy of their list of high-value targets, in her capacity as co-chair of the Inter-agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD).
This after PDEA Director-General Aaron Aquino said that he is ready to present the said list to Robredo but only on closed-door meeting in the presence of personnel with security clearance.
Aquino has earlier refused to have the vice president furnished with the copy as it may compromise their operation, saying “the list is considered classified information that is why not everybody must have a copy of it.”
He added that if the list is given to the vice president, they will not have a way of knowing who else might see and learn of its content.
“Sa pinaka simpleng explanation — kapag binigay namin ang listahan kay VP Robredo hindi na namin alam kung sino sino ang magkakaroon ng access sa listahan. That will compromise our negation operations,” Aquino said.
Aquino also cited the “need to know rule” in law enforcement where not everybody is given access to sensitive and classified information.
Meanwhile, PNP Officer-in-Charge PLtGen. Archie Gamboa said Robredo’s request may already be immaterial as the ICAD decides as a collegial body.
“Fine, if you want to review the law enforcement campaign. But would it really matter if you know who are on the list? So yes, I adhere to what PDEA Director General says,” Gamboa said.
The PNP chief once again advised VP Robredo to focus on the advocacy and the rehabilitation aspect of the campaign against illegal drugs.
Gamboa said the vice president must entrust the aspect of law enforcement to the agencies that have full know-how on the matter.
“Why would the VP not take the advocacy and the rehabilitation? Law enforcement and prosecution or on the justice could be best left to those who know it.” (from the report of Harlene Delgado) /mbmf
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