By Billy Begas
Deputy Speaker Bernadette Herrera on Thursday called out the Philippine National Police (PNP) over a memorandum ordering the arrest of persons involved in the illegal sale and use of Ivermectin.
Herrera said Ivermectin is not an illegal drug and is not banned in the country.
The Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) Headquarters released a memorandum directing its regional and special operating units to coordinate with the FDA in the conduct of police operations against sellers and users of Ivermectin.
The memorandum, signed by CIDG Deputy Director for Operation Police Colonel Cosme Abrenica, cited a supposed directive from President Rodrigo Duterte during the March 24 private meeting in Malacañang to “arrest persons involved in the illegal sale and use of Ivermectin, and confiscate the same.”
Herrera doubted if the President issued such directive.
“How can Ivermectin be illegal when compounding laboratories are actually allowed to produce and sell it?” Herrera asked.
Herrera said she already talked to PNP Chief Gen. Debold Sinas and CIDG Chief Police Brigadier General Albert Ferro, who assured her to recall the memorandum and issue a more accurate directive to CIDG units.
Ivermectin is being eyed to treat COVID-19 patients. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a compassionate use permit to one hospital to use it to its COVID-19 patients.