Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte has promised rewards of thousands of dollars for information leading to capture of officers protecting drug lords. He warned that corrupt officials would face “a day of reckoning.”
In a National Heroes Day speech, Duterte said there would be no let up in the war against drugs in Philippines. According to police figures, more than 1900 people have been killed since he came to power just two months ago as a result of drug dealers resisting arrest or gang feuds.
Duterte railed against critics who have complained that the poor who trade drugs to make a living are being targeted by police, but added that army generals, city officials, governors and police involved in the drug trade must also be stopped.
“I consider the fight against drugs a war, there is a crisis in this country, it is drugs… It has infected every nook and corner,” he said in a speech to retired and serving soldiers, government officials and foreign diplomats.
Singling out corrupt policemen known as “ninjas” who take payments from drug lords, Duterte said he was placing a $43,000 (2 million peso) bounty on their heads, encouraging their colleagues to “squeal on your friends”.
Duterte won the presidential election in May on a promise to wipe out drugs and dealers and last month named 160 officials, judges, police and soldiers who he said were protecting drug traffickers and selling drugs in their communities.