Dispatch from Crame No. 540: Sen. Leila M. de Lima’s Statement on the murder of former Medellin Mayor Ricardo Ramirez


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No thanks to the Duterte regime, gangland executions have flourished as what happened to former Mayor Ricardo Ramirez of Medellin, Cebu. Considering that he was under hospital arrest, the ability of the gunmen, 15 of them with ski masks and high-powered firearms, to come within proximity and with ease to shoot Ramirez dead reeks of the involvement of state actors or agents, possibly even Duterte’s own death squad.

This is after all a trademark of the Presidency of Rodrigo Roa Duterte. He continues to peddle killing in various forms as the end-all solution to the problems of the nation. Drug problem? Kill via police operation. Opposition to the government? Kill via EJK. Political rivalry? Kill through assassination. And the list goes on.

This “kill, kill, kill” program under Duterte has literally triggered death squads to carry out assassinations with impunity. It was easy to put a bullet in Mayor Rolando Espinosa, who was also under detention, and I am sure Mayor Ramirez will not be the last to die in the hands of assassins, be it under state custody or by whatever “creative” methods these hit men will resort to.

Ganito ang gustong mangyari ng Pangulo. Matakot tayo sa kanya dahil posibleng sumunod ang kamatayan. Sadya niyang ipinapalobo ang mga problema para ipamukha sa atin na may matinding krisis na kailangan ng desperadong solusyon.

President Duterte has been in power for three years and we have yet to see an end to this culture of violence. In fact, we have even witnessed how those involved in killings have been rewarded through promotion.

If the President really claims he is for ending criminality, then he should walk the talk and start condemning the killings. But we know that will not happen. After all, he is the puppet master pulling the strings of these death squads. ###

(Access the handwritten copy of Dispatch from Crame No. 540, here: https://issuu.com/senatorleilam.delima/docs/dispatch_no._540)

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