PDEA claims all due respect and courtesy accorded to VP

Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) Director General said today
(December 16, 2019) that he has accorded all the respect and courtesy
due to the Vice President during her two-week stint as his co-chairman of
the Inter Agency Committee Against Illegal Drugs or ICAD.

Director General Aaron Aquino said that contrary to the statement of Vice
President Leny Robredo that he was supportive in private, dismissive in
front of media, he was the one who advised the Vice President to meet the
four ICAD clusters one by one to better understand the committee.

“If you remember, I was even the one who asked the VP to join in one of
our operations during the first ICAD meeting with VP last November 8 at
her office in Quezon City for her to have a full understanding of what the
law enforcers are doing,” Aquino said.

Aquino added that while he feels awkward with the VP as his co-chairman,
he has to respect her foremost because she was appointed by the President and secondly because she was the Vice President, the second highest official of the land.

“In fact last December 10, 2019, during the ICAD fellowship, I asked all
ICAD members to make the necessary actions on the recommendations of
VP Robredo stipulated in her letter to President Duterte dated November
11, 2019 and report the same to the ICAD on January 2020,” Aquino said.

Among her recommendations and urgent concerns are:

  1. There is an urgent need to have accurate baseline data for
    the campaign against illegal drugs. In coming up with the accurate
    baseline, the integrity of the completion of the ongoing 2019
    Nationwide Survey on the Nature and Extent of Drug Abuse in the
    Philippines and the information generated by local ADACs can be
  2. The setting of overall targets under PADS is a step in the right direction; however, these targets are activity-based rather than outcome-oriented. Short-term, quantifiable, and time-bound targets
    focusing on outcomes that need to be created.

Aquino also clarified that he did not beg Robredo to stay with ICAD,
contrary to her claim aired during her radio program BISErbisyong Leny
last December 15, quoting Aquino as saying “Maam, huwag po ninyo
kaming iiwan kasi maraming nangyayari nung nandyan ka na. kasi Usec
lang ako.”

“Hindi ko po sinabi na huwag niyang kaming iwan. It was the Vice President who said that she will stay as long as the President wants her to retain her post as ICAD co-chairman. Maybe the VP only got mixed up by
the turn of events,” Aquino said.

Aquino also reiterated his statement that Robredo did not heed to his
advice to meet all four ICAD clusters.

“Well, she met ICAD last November 8 for what she described as “listening exercise. Last November 12, she met the law enforcement cluster. Then she met with DILG, PDEA and Dangerous Drugs Board, which are just members of different clusters. Hindi talaga niya nameet ang ibang clusters.
Yun ang sinasabi kong kakulangan,
” Aquino explained

On VP’s statement that Aquino is not a true gentleman, he said “she is
entitled to her opinion.”

“Pero siya pa lang ang nagsabi nun sa buong buhay ko,” said Aquino.