Mar Roxas is Better Than Duterte, Says Ateneo Professor Christina A. Astorga

Is mar better than Digong? ‘No way!’ Digong supporter answers back critic’s claim

A few days ago, a netizen named Sass Rogando Sasot who is a Master of Arts in International Relations student and Research/Teaching Assistant at Leiden University at The Hague in The Netherlands, answered the claim of former Professor and Chairperson of Ateneo de Manila University Christina A. Astorga that said Roxas’ ‘Oplan Lambat-Sibat’ is far better and efficient than President Digong’s method of apprehending criminals.

Sasot fired back at Astorga by posting this on her social media page:

“According to Former Professor and Chairperson of Ateneo de Manila University
Christina A. Astorga , Mar Roxas is more effective than Duterte because under Roxas “146 of the 440 most wanted drug suspects were arrested in just 6 weeks.” So they were arrested without a fight? I guess you know the circumstances of the arrest of each of those 146 suspects? I mean you are only reading numbers Ms. Astorga. Drug pushers, specially the most wanted suspects, carry gun. Ano ba tingin ninyo nag-kekeme keme lang sila? Alam nga ng Vice News yan. Nasa documentary po nila. Ano ba kayo?”

Besides, do you think that being arrested is the end of days of drug pushers? Darling, being imprisoned means promotion. The drug trade in the Philippines is being ran INSIDE the prison. Anong petsa na? Di nyo ba alam yan?
Impressed by 146 in six weeks? Under Duterte, 4000 drug pushers SURRENDERED in one day in one city, and it’s not just a number, you can see that it happened. EAT THAT.”

A few days ago, thousands of drug related criminals and personalities have surrendered to local police stations and government officials in fear of being at the receiving end of “Duterte Justice” that will be applied to criminals all over the country. According to CHR, 150 persons have died since Duterte assumed office as the Philippine President. NCRPO has implemented ‘Oplan Tokhang’ (short for ‘Tok-tok’ , Knock-knock & ‘hangyo’ , ask) as part of their strategy of curbing drug-related crime and drug addiction that has plagued the country for years. Many of the suspected drug offenders have reportedly attacked or attempted to attack Police personnel knocking on their doors. The police, however, claimed that deaths resulted to ‘self-defense’ and not ‘summary executions’.

Sasot, who posted the article on her Facebook page, heavily criticized the President’s reportedly “trigger happy” method of silencing criminals. Her post is shown below:
Stop Duterte’s blitzkrieg vigilante killing that is unconstitutional, illegal, and immoral. Duterte is giving all citizens license to kill on mere suspicion. The poorest among us will be most likely the victims of false arrest and false executions. The rich can buy guns, hire lawyers, and also hire security guards to provide 24 hour protection. The poor will be defenseless victims of brutal violation of their right to due process and just law. When everyone is given by the president license to kill on mere suspicion, a lawless society is created. Is this president in his right mind. We have a killer president who seems to be trigger happy. Kill, kill, kill is his mantra!

Calling Roxas’ effective Oplan Lambat Sibat. It was effective in reducing crimes according to PNP! It reduced crimes in Metro Manila by 60% since June 2014 when it was first instituted. The cases of crime came down from 900 to 300 in August 2015. 146 of the 440 most wanted drug suspects were arrested in just 6 weeks!

Why is Oplan Lambat Sibat effective? It employs intensified police intervention like putting up checkpoints; it deploys mobile and foot patrol, and it engages in intelligence-driven operations. Roxas cites the three strategies that Oplan Lambat Sibat engages in– First, it audits the police blotters; second, it geo-tag crimes by location; and third it concentrates operations in places with the high incidences of crime. With these strategies, everyday, of 900, less than 500 people are not victimized by crime according to reports.

The difference of Roxas Oplan Lambat Sibat and Duterte’s Vigilante Killing is that Oplan Lambat Sibat is within the law. It employs only those with professional license and training to deal with crime. It is based on methodic intelligence work, coupled with strategies to effectively reduce crimes. Duterte’s vigilante killing is extra judicial– it is outside of the law– unconstitutional, illegal, and also immoral. It violates due process and fair trial. It is not based on methodic intelligence work. It is “bara bara”.. Just shoot to kill on mere suspicion. And Duterte is giving all citizens license to kill, and certainly includes those who are trigger happy! When crime is used to stop crime, it will only create more crimes and other social problems.

Bring back Roxas’ Oplan Lambat Sibat. Strengthen the police and military force; deepen and broaden intelligence work that help locate the places with highest incidences of crimes and drug; deploy more mobile and foot patrol in cities and towns. Get the participation of the community by employing citizens as the eyes and ears of the professional military and police force, but not the carriers of killer guns themselves with license to kill.
Bring back Roxas’ Oplan Lambat Sibat, or better still, bring back Roxas! He is the more intelligent, strategic, and effective crime czar than Duterte! And he operates within the law and he does not need emergency powers!”

No matter who is right or wrong, the goal is still the same: curb crime, if not possible to completely eliminate it for the people’s peace and the nation prosperity. You be the judge.

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