Philippine National Police chief Gen. Dionardo Carlos said “Oplan Double Barrel Finale,” which would last until President Duterte vacates from his position as president next year, would not be “much” of a change from the government’s current anti-drug campaign.
The Philippine National Police (PNP) will remove “Oplan Tokhang” or the government’s flagship knock-and-plead suppresion on drug suspects as the Duterte administration comes to a close.
PNP chief Gen. Dionardo Carlos said instead of appearing at the doorsteps of supposed drug suspects and effecting arrest, police would be focusing on community-based approaches intended to reintegrate drug dependents into society.
“We will not do that. We will assign police officers in barangays who will coordinate with local officials and take care of those who surrender to the program and make them productive members of the society,” Carlos exclaimed.
Carlos added “Oplan Double Barrel Finale,” which would last until Duterte steps down from office on 2022, would not be “much” of a change from the government’s current anti-drug campaign.
He said the PNP would continue the programs of former PNP chiefs except for Tokhang, wordplay between “toktok” or knock and “hangyo” or plead.
Tokhang has been criticized by local and international human rights groups for supposed summary killings.
Together with Oplan High-Value Target, Tokhang comprised Oplan Double Barrel that was launched in 2016 by the drug war’s master planner, then PNP chief now Sen. Ronald dela Rosa.
“The fact that the word (tokhang) has changed meaning… Its intention was good but its meaning became somewhat negative. So I am not saying that the program of tokhang is not good. It is good. However, the use of the word has changed,” Carlos explained.
“So what we’ll do is take care of our barangays and surrenderees,” he said, adding supply reduction efforts would continue through high-quantity drug busts instead of street-level operations.
The Duterte administration’s drug war, based on the latest government data, has killed over 6,000 people since 2016.
Activists and rights groups believe the death toll is much higher, with thousands more killed execution-style by unidentified gunmen.
With additional report: Neil Jayson Servallos, ONE Network
Image sources: Rappler, Politiko | Philippine News, The Philippine Star