Duterte rejects calls to become anti-drug czar under Marcos administration

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 1) — Former President Rodrigo Duterte has rejected calls anew for him to lead the Marcos administration’s anti-drug campaign.

“Mukhang hindi na rin tama (I don’t think it’s right) because there is a president duly elected and it is his duty to enforce the law and solve crimes,” he said during an interview with Pastor Apollo Quiboloy Wednesday night.

Duterte, who is known for his brutal crackdown on illegal drugs, said President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. must be given “the greatest elbow room leeway to do his job in just one year.”

“In fairness sa mga pulis, 'yan ang problema (in fairness to the police, that’s the problem)… It's a matter of leadership,” he added.

This was the second time that Duterte rejected the call for him to serve as anti-drug czar. It was floated again after his close allies, Senators Bato dela Rosa and Bong Go, pushed the proposal during the May 23 Senate probe into the alleged cover-up in the ₱6.7-billion shabu haul last October.

Go asked Philippine National Police Chief Benjamin Acorda Jr. if appointing Duterte as anti-drug czar will boost the campaign against illegal drugs.

Acorda told Go that he would be “supportive” of any efforts to stomp out the proliferation of illegal drugs.

In April, the International Criminal Court (ICC) said Duterte “encouraged” the bloody drug war, which killed thousands of individuals allegedly engaged in illegal drug trade.

Late in May, the ICC released another report, stating that the families of drug war victims have doubts that their cases could realize progress under the Marcos admininistration.