Duterte’s double standard to serve and protect cronies
It is well established that Philippine National Police Chief Debold Sinas slips past the regime’s "dura lex sed lex" despite being a no stranger in breaking the law—as the former Central Visayas police chief, he was implicated in the 324 extrajudicial killings, with 133 killed in police operations in Cebu alone. The chief implementer of Oplan Sauron, resulting in the massacre of 20 peasants in Negros; Sinas operated a series of raids and arrested five during his first month as NCRPO chief.
”He is a good officer, an honest one,” Duterte said in his press conference on Tuesday night. “Pinag-aralan ko ang merits at saka demerits, mas kailangan ko ‘yung tao sa trabaho niya.” Duterte applies the law according to his will and threatens institutions to abide by his whims.
Non-compliance results in punitive measures and harassment, but Duterte neither faces the risk of detention whenever he issued a threat to the citizens nor was held accountable for allegedly ordering killings while National Bureau of Investigation probes on ordinary citizens online who express dismay on the government.
The militaristic lockdown is a gateway to mercilessly obey the “shoot-to-kill” order of quarantine violators, mass arrests, harassment, and human rights violations turning the country into a bloody playground against opposition and critics in the midst of a national health emergency.
Threats and bounty
Prior to the strike of the pandemic, when Duterte opened the doors to lawless killings in the war on drugs, his son Paolo Duterte was implicated in smuggling drugs and was put under trial and investigation.
When ordinary citizens break the law, they were immediately arrested while the police and public officials run loose. Those who hold power turn laws into controlling profit and depriving people of their rights.
Today, public officials who violate quarantine violations are put under due process while police and military were ordered to shoot ordinary citizens who violate social distancing and curfews.
Duterte cannot hide the fact that the pandemic further exposes his dictatorship and selfish ambitions. The two-month military lockdown is a ticking clock without definitive health measures.
Duterte imposes war tactics of worsening the burden of the people as a pretext of goodwill such as his war on drugs, countless counterinsurgency programs, military lockdown in the guise of protecting the Filipino people while taking advantage of the crisis to struck down his oppositions and impose an undeclared martial law.
This fascist and profit-oriented administration lifted certain mobility restrictions to Filipino workers without ensuring their safety through serious mass testing while several government officials and VIPs got tested multiple times.
The double standard in the implementation of lockdown and unreasonable policies that only benefit those in power has left a higher-risk environment for the people. The Duterte administration is caught between its own words.
In this regard, people must rely on scientific solutions and oppose Duterte and his cronies’ ruthless and cold-blooded military lockdown policies. Duterte must be held accountable for the worsening socio-political atmosphere in the country.
Duterte is walking the contradiction of his own words, ultimately due to his failure to address the root cause of poverty and the inevitable downfall of his regime.