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Duterte’s squatters affairs chief is all thumbs up for drug war littered with dead bodies of the poor

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Presidential Commission for the Urban Poor (PCUP) Chair Terry Ridon is not bothered by President Rodrigo Duterte’s brutal war on drugs even if practically all of the victims come from the slums whose interests he is supposed to uphold.

In fact, he believes that the take-no-prisoner approach in Duterte’s drug war was in the interest of the urban poor.

“We have to be perfectly honest that much of the Tokhang is being undertaken in urban poor communities ‘no. But it is also in the interest of the poor, the urban poor communities for the drug problem, and for criminality to be resolved in many of their areas,” said Ridon in a briefing in Malacanang.

“I think, obviously it is unfortunate that several of the people in the poor communities are affected by it…Ano ho talaga ‘yan eh, I think, bahagi po talaga ‘yan ‘nong kampanya,” said Ridon.

He claimed that residents in squatter areas recognize the benefits of the drug war despite the bloody results. “I think within these communities, if you go to those areas, there would be at the very least an affirmation that responding to criminality and the drug problem is really a very important step towards nation-building,” said Ridon.

Ridon, a lawyer and a former representative of the Kabataan party-list, a member of the leftist Makabayan bloc in Congress, said he wholeheartedly supported Duterte’s strategy despite the rising body count.

Ridon said that “Oplan Tokhang” should be complemented with projects such as PCUP’s initiative, ‘Urban Poor Kontra Droga’, in several cities “to provide the softer approach towards the drug war.”