Festival of killings

4,605 dead in the drug war and counting.

As of November 23, 2016, the Philippine National Police (PNP) reported the government’s anti-drug war “Oplan Double Barrel” has resulted in the killing of 1,959 suspected drug pushers and addicts in police operations nationwide while 2,646 others were victims of summary executions.

That is more than the number of those killed under the administration of the late president Ferdinand E. Marcos, who was recently interred at the Libingan ng mga Bayani. Under the 10-year period of the Marcos regime, 3,257 have been reportedly killed by the military.

Bereft of due process and the chance to change and lead better lives, those who were killed in the drug war ended up as statistics to the festival of killings. There is no end in sight — as if the killings would end the problem on illegal drugs.

The PNP went on to say that some 37,449 drug suspects were also arrested during the 36,600 police anti-narcotics operations from July 1 until this month. Under “Oplan Tokhang,” policemen have also visited 4,091,542 homes nationwide and prompted 807,659 drug dependents and pushers to turn themselves to authorities. Some of those who surrendered were eventually assassinated by unknown vigilantes, according to two mayors in Manila.

Bodies continue to pile up in the government’s brutal crackdown on illegal drugs. Rogue cops involved in the illegal drug trade were allegedly behind the summary executions to cover their tracks.

A six-month extension in the government’s war against illegal drugs would mean more lives to be lost in the messy drug war.

4,605 dead and counting.