Senator Bato: What’s wrong with ‘Oplan Tokhang?’


MANILA, Philippines — “What’s  wrong with Oplan Tokhang?”

So asked former Philippine National Police (PNP) chief and now Senator Ronald  “Bato” Dela Rosa Tuesday (12 November 2019) as he defended the Duterte Administration’s anti-illegal drugs campaign Tuesday amid Vice President Leni Robredo’s plan to get rid of “Oplan Tokhang,” the purpose of a police initiative to identify, approach suspected drug traffickers and users for them to reform and convince them to stop their nefarious activities.

“Tokhang” is short for “Katok” (knock) while “Hangyu” is a Visayan word meaning to beg, ask, convince somebody.

When he was National Police Chief, Dela Rosa was one of the main personalities behind “Oplan Tokhang.”

“No. I don’t admit na failure yung  “Oplan Tokhang,”  Dela Rosa said in an interview on  ABS-CBN News Channel’s morning show  “Headstart.”

“Without Oplan Tokhang, we could not have 1.6 million surrenderers, we could not have 130,000  drug personalities arrested. Without Oplan Tokhang, we  could not have reduced the index crime volume by 49 percent.”

“So what’s wrong with Oplan Tokhang? Baka  hindi lang  nila  matanggap-tanggap talaga na itong  Oplan na ito ay talagang sinira ang diskarte  ng mga drug personalities dito,”  he added.

Nevertheless, although she acknowledged her position as co-chair of the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD), Dela Rosa refused to comment on Robredo’s movements.

“Let’s give her enough time to prove herself. Mahirap i-prejudge kaagad yung tao na hindi pa nakapag perform so hintayin natin baka something good will happen,”  he said of Robredo. (Chris Figueroa/IAMIGO/CNS)

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