President Rodrigo Duterte said he would fire Vice President Leni Robredo as the drug czar once she exposed “classified matters” of state, saying this would put the security of the government at risk.
Duterte made the statement in an interview with GMA News when asked about the new Robredro’s meeting with US delegations.
“There’s a limit to that. I know that she’s a lawyer and she has other advisers… There are certain matters that should be kept with the government, that classified matters cannot be shared. Once [she does] that, she’s out, I would fire her. Because you jeopardized the security of the state,” he pronounced.
On Wednesday, November 13, the Vice President sat with the International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs of the US State Department, US Drug Enforcement Administration, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the US Agency for International Development (USAID), to talk about furthering the country’s anti-illegal drug campaign.
“Napag-usapan din ang mga kakulangan sa kasalukuyang kampanya at ang mga tulong na maaari pa nilang maibigay para lalong paigtingin ang kampanya laban sa droga,” Robredo said.
“Kabilang dito ang pagkakaroon ng malinaw na baseline data tungkol sa sitwasyon ng droga sa bansa, pag-aralan ang mga maaaring pag-amyenda sa Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act para tiyaking angkop pa rin ito sa ating kasalukuyang pangangailangan, at ang pagpapalakas ng mga programa para sa drug use prevention at community-based drug rehabilitation,” she added.
Meanwhile, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo echoed Duterte’s statement, saying “[r]evealing State secrets to foreign individuals and entities as well as welcoming those who have trampled the country’s sovereignty would be damaging to the welfare of the Filipino people.”
In July, the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) approved a resolution seeking to investigate the administration’s drug war, which later on angered Duterte, who questioned the purpose of the probe.
However, Robredo, in her interview with Reuters in October, said that Duterte should have allowed the UNHRC to investigate.
“The President has already made very serious threats to drug syndicates, to drug lords… and yet it’s still very prevalent, so obviously it’s not working,” she said.
Following these remarks, the President appointed Robredo to be the co-chairperson of the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs, which the latter accepted as she believed that this will be an opportunity to stop the killings.