Duterte asks for six more months to fight drugs and crime

President Rodrigo Duterte said he needs another six months on top of the first six months that he initially imposed on his administration to solve illegal drugs and crimes in the Philippines.

In a press conference for the release of Norwegian hostage Kjartan Sekkingstad on Sunday, September 18, Duterte said that he is trying his “very best” to put the Philippines in order by solving  problems like kidnapping, terrorism and drugs. He then added that the country would need time “to put everything in order.

Duterte also said he did not realize the extent of the drug problem in the country until he became President, adding that addressing the problem that is like pressing “worms out of a can.”

Some 700,000 drug users and drug pushers have “surrendered” to the police since Duterte assumed the presidency on June 30.

“No one could believe that there would be about 700,000 new guys involved in the drug business who have surrendered to the police and military,” Duterte said.

“The problem is, I cannot kill them all. Even if I wanted to. That was what I said. Even if I wanted to, I cannot kill them all… There is narco-politics on the lowest government unit, and that will be the start of our agony,” he added.

Duterte then asked for an extension to his six-month deadline in solving illegal drug problems in the country.

“Just give me a little extension, maybe another six months,” he said.

“I didn’t have an idea that there are hundreds of thousands of people already in the drug business. What makes it worse is they are cooperated now by people in government, especially those in elected positions. So, it will be government versus government,” he added.

During the campaign, Duterte promised to end crime and corruption in the Philippines within three to six months of his election. He even lashed at his rivals then who questioned his ambitious promise, calling them “bayot.”

“Sabi ng mga kalaban ko, imposible raw. Kasi bayot kayo! Hindi nila kaya. Kasi alam mo mga yan takot mapreso. Takot magkamali, takot pumatay, takot mamatay. Kasi bakit, mayaman. Ang mga mayaman, takot mamatay, nawiwili sap era,” he said in February.

In the same press conference in Davao City, Duterte also said that he already has the three-inch thick final list of another batch of government officials involved with illegal drugs. The list, he said, was revalidated two months ago to ensure that cases can be filed against the people in it.

Postpone barangay elections

Duterte said he wanted to postpone the barangay elections that are scheduled this October, adding that many of the candidates are funded by drug syndicates. However, he said that he would let the Congress attend to the matter.

He added that if the drug syndicate-supported barangay officials win, “that would be the start, maybe, of our perdition and agony.”

Duterte also said he would no longer give policemen escorts to barangay captains, even in areas prone to attacks by the New People’s Army.

“We just have to defang them. Get the police out as [their] bodyguards. I will order I will not allow any policeman to act as bodyguard of any barangay captain. If you’re afraid of being killed, if you are there in the rural areas, by the NPAs, then do not run for public office. Find another occupation,” Duterte said.

According to the data from the Philippine National Police (PNP) gathered since July 1, as published by Rappler, 3,213 people were killed, 1,140 of which were killed in police operations (as of September 18) while 2,073 were victims of vigilante killings (as of September 15).

Human rights groups and international agencies like the United Nations have expressed concern about the rising number of killings in the Philippines and urged the government to investigate these cases.

Sources: (,


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