Senatorial bet Samira Gutoc said that the drug war could have been the Duterte administration’s greatest achievement if not for the thousands of alleged killings.
"Achievement – drugs could be but the deaths, EJKs are so astoundingly appalling… Yes peace and order in away but the deaths from it are so warranting (of) questioning and investigation," she said in an interview with ANC's Headstart on Tuesday (October 5).
Asked to clarify, she said “Achievement or maybe just – the only one that is remarkable...‘rememberable.’”
Eventually, the Moro civic leader changed her answer and said that the administration's greatest achievement was the Bangsamoro region.
"As a resident of Marawi, malaking bagay po na (it's a huge thing that) he (President Rodrigo Duterte) sealed it with a signature from a 20-year dialogue – Aquino and all these administrations who had these peace talks," she said.
Some netizens were quick to point out Gutoc’s flipflop on the drug war.
Samira Gutoc was once a staunch opposition of Duterte's Drug War last 2019 elections. Now, she hails it as an "achievement" and calls it, in her own word, "rememberable."
Ma'am @GutocSamira ANYARE??? pic.twitter.com/6QeD80Ro7t
— 𝐩𝐚𝐭𝐫𝐢𝐪𝐮𝐞 🌈🌻 (@pattiechoo) October 5, 2021
Ma'am Samira Gutoc
Why is the drug war "an achievement of the Duterte admin?" I thought VP Leni showed us before while she was drug czar—data after data, number by numbers—that the drug war not only was an abysmal failure, but also a big injustice to human rights? https://t.co/1SWvfNfGID
— Francis Baraan IV (@MrFrankBaraan) October 5, 2021
This is so disappointing. Defended your move as a practical political move but this is is starting to feel like a completely different set of values from what we saw from you in 2019. What happened ma’am 😔 pic.twitter.com/MrR0OK3L72
— seiruhhhh dove (@lakwatsarah) October 5, 2021
Later in the day, Gutoc posted a clarification on her statement during the interview, saying that she doesn’t support the drug war.
Sa mga nagpabatid ng puna, wag po kayong mag-alala. Never po akong naging pro-drug war. Pasensya na po kayo sa interview kanina, wag po natin sana ma misconstrue. Thank you for bringing this to my attention and holding me accountable. Sama-sama tayong susulong. pic.twitter.com/NtIVftkJKf
— Samira Gutoc (@GutocSamira) October 5, 2021
The former opposition senatorial bet, filed her candidacy for senator for the 2022 elections on Sunday, this time under the party led by presidential candidate Isko Moreno.
Gutoc said that she sought permission for her transfer to Aksyon Demokratiko through a letter to party chair Vice President Leni Robredo.
"I reached out to all major leaders po ng (of) Liberal. I asked permission from them. I'm not someone who has no sense of gratitude," she said.
"Many leaders under the so-called 'yellow' party have passed away, I've reached out to them whenever in need and they know I did not betray what I stood for,” she added.
"Aksyon's focus on jobs, hunger, peace, empowerment of the masses and of the youth resonated quite powerfully with me, as these are the same objectives I have set for my work," she said in a separate interview with DZMM Teleradyo.
Ana Catalina Paje is a development journalist passionate about grassroots communication geared towards genuine social change. She also writes about showbiz, lifestyle, and all things Pinoy pride. The views expressed are her own.
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