By: Elena Grace Flores
This was the words of Mayor Rolando Espinosa when he surrendered to Philippine National Police Director general Ronald dela Rosa: “I was really afraid of the shoot-on-sight order. I still want to live” – who wouldn’t be? Mayor Rolando Espinosa Sr. is the mayor of the small town of Albuera in Leyte province who complied to the 24-hour deadline set by President Duterte for him and his son, Kerwin, to surrender or die on their alleged involvement in illegal drugs.
Philippine National Police Director General Ronald dela Rosa also inherited the speaking style of Duterty threatening that Espinosa would live unless he was lying to protect his son, an alleged big time drug lord in Eastern Visayas whom he had no idea as to his whereabouts.
Both the PNP Chief and the mayor agreed: Dela Rosa asked Espinosa, “If he won’t surrender, we will kill him, OK?” Espinosa replied, “OK” – which is totally illegal unless he becomes a threat to other person’s life. Together with his lawyer and a public prosecutor, Espinosa surrendered at Camp Crame but without his son, Kerwin that prompted dela Rosa to announce through the media that he will die if he remains non compliant to the order.
Without pending arrest warrant against Espinosa, the mayor was sent home after he was presented to the media – which is now the trend in this drug-bust operation of Duterte. Lots of talks and plenty of trial and errors that destroyed the lives of many through humiliation.
Espinosa seems like a figure of a failed father – that he cannot make his son behave despite warning even, He even got a face lift overseas to avoid being caught by authorities.Their last encounter was last October.
Espinosa confirmed to Dela Rosa his son’s supplier among others was Peter Co, a convicted drug lords detained at the New Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa City.
The shoot to kill order was misleading and contested by Senator Leila de Lima backed by human rights groups, who said the rule of law and due process must still prevail.In fact, they already filed a complaint at the UN to investigate and urge the president to stop extra judicial killings.