Malacañang using Dela Rosa as ‘scapegoat’ in ‘tokhang-for-ransom’, says De Lima

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  • Senator Leila De Lima has hit at the Duterte administration over the ‘tokhang-for-ransom’ issue
  • She said PNP chief Dela Rosa should not be blamed alone
  • She also hinted at Malacañang possibly using Dela Rosa as a ‘scapegoat’

MANILA, Philippines – After weeks of silence, Senator Leila De Lima has hit anew at the Duterte administration; this time over the issue of the alleged ‘tokhang-for-ransom’ modus of some police officers.

In a statement on Saturday, De Lima hinted at Malacañang Palace, for lack of someone to blame, possibly using Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Ronald ‘Bato’ Dela Rosa as ‘scapegoat’ in the recent controversy hounding the police force.

“Dela Rosa is only following the President’s orders to let loose a police force free from any accountability, especially for EJKs and other abuses committed in the name of his war on drugs,” said De Lima.

The senator said Dela Rosa should not be blamed alone for some of his men’s abuses and urge Duterte to acknowledge that his ‘war on drugs’ has given police officers the audacity to commit crime and violate human rights.

“This is not the sole fault of its PNP Chief, but mostly of his President who has transformed a once professional institution into nothing more than tokhang death squads engaged in tong shakedown rackets,” added the senator.

De Lima’s statement came after a witness claimed that South Korean kidnap victim Jee Ick-joo was killed inside Camp Crame on the day he was abducted from his home in Angeles City last October.

Dela Rosa has since admitted the revelation has drove him to ‘melt in shame’ out of embarrassment, especially that the Korean victim was allegedly strangled to death by an Anti-Illegal Drugs Group (AIDG) cop inside the group’s headquarters which is located a few meters away from the White House, the PNP Chief’s official residence inside Camp Crame.

“Very angry, very offended,” Dela Rosa was quoted as saying to describe how he felt after being told about the witness’ story.

Meanwhile, De Lima said the spate of killings and abuses allegedly committed by scalawags in uniform will continue as long as these so-called ‘operations’ will remain ‘tolerated’.

“The kidnappings committed in the name of the drug war will not end anytime soon, as long as we also accept and tolerate the killing of drug suspects as legitimate police options,” the lawmaker stressed.