‘Death penalty’ for drug traffickers, corrupt execs

OPINION
By CRIS DIAZ
July 24, 2019

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President Rodrigo Duterte talked about the various programs of his government during his three-year term in office. Halfway before his term ends in 2022, he admitted that the illegal drug trade in the country persists despite the iron-fisted policy of the government.
    
During his 4th State of the Nation Address (SONA) this year with the Congressional bicameral body, Duterte also cited “massive corruption” in the government, which become a trademark of Philippine governance.
    
SONA is an annual tradition practiced by Philippine Presidents delivered at the start of the fiscal year in the Congressional bicameral body.
    
In his speech, Duterte asked Congress to pass the law that would re-implement the “death penalty” against purveyors of the illegal drug trade in the country. In addition, the President also wants the inclusion of “plunder” as a crime that would merit the death penalty.
    
Understandably, the focus of the imposition of the death penalty would be on crimes against illegal drugs and corruption. Plunder is the mother of all corruption in the government. A government official, especially elected public official, suspected to have pocketed or stolen government funds of, at least, P 50 million could be charged with plunder. Once proven guilty of plunder, Duterte wants the public official meted the extreme penalty of death.
    
There was sepulchral silence about death penalty imposed on perpetrators of “illegal drug trade.” Perhaps, the august body agrees silently on Duterte’s pleadings to mete the penalty of death against perpetrators of illegal drugs.
    
Duterte’s proposed death penalty for the perpetrators of illegal drugs bring us back to the 70s during the Martial Law era. Sometime on Jan. 15, 1973, Lim Seng, a Chinese businessman who ran a number of legitimate businesses to cover up his illegal drug trade, was meted the penalty of “death by musketry.”
    
By the way, the execution of Lim Seng by “firing squad” was carried out in Luneta Park in Manila in broad daylight witnessed by thousands of people and covered by the national and international press.
    
Since then, the proliferation of illegal drug trade and syndicates in the country stopped. Nobody dares to experience the “death by musketry” anymore. Perhaps, the illegal drug syndicate relocated has relocated their operation in other countries in Southeast Asia.
    
There is the suspicion that the illegal drug syndicate in the country was reinvigorated in the country when the Aquinos and their political conspirators grabbed power. In fact, if Duterte did not become President, the Philippines would have now turned into a “Wild, Wild East,” a comparative description of the “Wild, Wild West” in America, where killing was part of the daily menu.
    
Had it not for Duterte, the illegal drug syndicate in the country would have reached its peak that getting outside of the house would no longer be safe for anyone – illegal drug user or not. One could simply imagine the dangers poised by drug addicts in the neighborhood that everyone in the community would be tagged as “into drugs.”
    
Reminiscing the proliferation of illegal drug trade in the country, five to ten years ago, sent a quiver to one’s spine as one witness preschool pupils plying “cheap” illegal Shabu, the poor man’s cocaine, in schools and in street corners, like gums and chocolates. Horrible!
    
nowing that illegal drugs in the country remains a “pain in the neck,” despite the government’s relentless anti-illegal drug campaign in the last three years, Duterte wants the legislative body to approve a law that would impose the death penalty on illegal drug traders. Thank you, Mr. President. The whole country would support by all means.
    
On the contrary, a muffled rustling could be overheard as Duterte pleaded to include plunder as a crime that would also deserve the “death penalty.” One could easily surmise that some public officials, which could possibly include elected members of the Congress, could be a target of the plunder case. No one could think twice that a number of elected public officials are facing “plunder” cases in the anti-graft court today. It would, however, take long years of court battles before the plunder case against an accused public official could be promulgated. If the public official charged with plunder is unlucky, the lethal injection would be the final destination. At least, dying with the lethal injection is blissful compared with dying by the tip of the burning lead.
    
Dying with the lethal injection is blissful because the convict would first be injected with a “muscle relaxant,” inducing sleep and dreams. Afterward, the poison is injected in the body, making sure the condemned would never be awake anymore.
    
Whatever the last dream, could be the millions stashed away from the government coffers. Any objection? Of course, there is. A good subject in the future. -0- Email reactions/comments: crisguardian@yahoo.com


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