Press Release
July 10, 2019

Duterte will have his day of reckoning for thousands of EJKs - De Lima

Opposition Senator Leila M. de Lima has expressed strong belief that Mr. Duterte will soon be held accountable for the thousands of extrajudicial killings (EJKs) committed under his administration's most murderous war on drugs.

"Your day of reckoning will come soon, Mr. Duterte. Sangkaterbang kaso ang naghihintay sa iyo pagbaba mo sa puwesto sa libu-libong patayan na nangyari sa iyong administrasyon," said De Lima, a champion of social justice and human rights.

De Lima issued the statement in reaction to Mr. Duterte's latest pronouncement that he would welcome cases in connection with the rampant EJKs rather than face corruption charges before the Ombudsman.

In a speech last Monday, Mr. Duterte said he does not want to face corruption-related charges before the Office of the Ombudsman as he prefers to be accused of killings thousands of people in connection with the government's war against illegal drugs.

De Lima, a former justice secretary, said Duterte's immense popularity will not save him from possible prosecution arising from the thousands of EJK cases that he is expected to face when his one-time, six-year term ends in June 2022.

Authorities have repeatedly claimed that around 6,600 have been killed in legitimate police operations, but around 27,000 unexplained deaths have been simply categorized by the government as "homicide under investigation."

"Hindi maliligtas si Mr. Duterte ng kanyang popularidad. Dapat siyang managot sa dugo ng inosenteng Pilipino na dumanak mula sa kanyang pekeng giyera kontra ilegal na droga," said De Lima.

The lady Senator from Bicol said the passage of her proposed Anti-EJK Bill will help prosecute Mr. Duterte and other personalities involved in the government's war on illegal drugs that has claimed the lives of thousands of innocent Filipinos.

Under De Lima's measure, EJK is defined as an unlawful and deliberate killing of targeted individuals or groups by agents of the State and under its order or acquiescence in lieu of arrest, investigation and prosecution.

"Extrajudicial killing includes summary killing perpetrated by private individuals for purposes of carrying out on their own or in the context of vigilantism, campaign or policy of the State," De Lima noted.

The staunchest critic of Duterte's drug war, De Lima is unjustly and illegally in detention despite her innocence from all the trumped-up illegal drug charges fabricated by the administration using perjured and coerced witnesses.

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