Presidential Chief Legal Counsel Sec. Salvador Panelo said today that a list of “around 10,000 names” is being readied for submission to the Philippines’ National Security Council by President Rodrigo Duterte.
“There are about 5,000 to 10,000 people involved. They are government officials — captains, mayors, governors, members of the military and prosecutors,” Panelo told the Philippines’ ABS-CBN news.
“I saw the folder, and it was more than one foot … one foot high.”
Panelo admitted that the number was high, and confirmed that the list was validated.
He said that what was most important in the move to submit the list was the “implications of the fact that there are about 10,000 people, government officials, involved, and that means that the magnitude as well as the depth of the dragnet is so much, so huge, that the public safety is now in danger.”
In his war on drugs, the president is considering suspending habaes corpus in the name of public security in order to “pick up” offenders and detain them, denying them what would otherwise be their right to question in court any unlawful detention. Duterte’s policy, however, is to refrain from sending police to arrest the people on the list “unless those people [do not] voluntarily submit themselves … .”
The president may submit his list to the NSC before the end of November, Panelo said. “According to the president … he wants those people arrested.”