Rodrigo Duterte no respect for Ilonggos in Bacolod

By: Alex P. Vidal

“There is no life to be found in violence. Every act of violence brings us closer to death. Whether it’s the mundane violence we do to our bodies by overeating toxic food or drink or the extreme violence of child abuse, domestic warfare, life-threatening poverty, addiction, or state terrorism.” — Bell Hooks

RODRIGO Roa Duterte may have abused his presidency for ordering his police “berdugo” Jovie Espenido, to “kill everybody” in Bacolod City.

If you are a parent, a wife, a husband, a priest, a journalist, a tambay, a teacher, an activist, a vendor and you live in Bacolod City, you will surely shake in your shirts.

Any civilian can be killed either on suspicion of involvement in illegal drugs, or as a “collateral damage” when the Duterte-inspired lawmen hunt down their “persons of interest.”

Any Juan, Pedro, Toto and Inday can be murdered because they are “nanlaban” or “nag bato” (resisted and fought the police) when “arrested”.

We all know what happened to the more than 5,000 alleged victims of the extra-judicial killings (EJK) ever since the Duterte administration waged a bloody rampage versus illegal drugs.




With his statement, a pre-Halloween dagger, Duterte probably thinks people in the “City of Smile” are worse animals.

He is promoting and sponsoring violence by egging an excited and over-rated chief law enforcer to disregard due process, the basic essence of democracy, and blatantly commit a human rights violation.

The president has no regard for human life.

He has no respect for the Ilonggos in Bacolod City who had accorded him a warm welcome on several occasions.

Duterte’s sweeping and irresponsible order on Espenido may be misinterpreted by trigger-happy maniacs who wear police uniforms.

He thinks the only solution to the problem on illegal drugs is to kill both the pusher and the user, to brutally wage terror in a civilian community.

Duterte has assigned Espenido, a police lieutenant colonel, to the Bacolod City Police Office (BCPO) as a deputy with the main purpose of running after illegal drug traffickers in the city which he described as “badly hit” by illegal drugs.

“Bacolod City is badly hit now and I placed Espenido there because he is the only police official feared the most,” Duterte said recently.

“And I told him to go there and you are free to kill everybody. ‘Go, start killing them.”




We are puzzled why until now no public official or organization in Bacolod City has criticized Mr. Duterte’s dangerous statement.

No one from the City Council has stood up in the rostrum to at least remind the president that Bacolod is a peaceful city and any violent enforcement of the law will not be tolerated by peace-loving Bacolodnons.

If Mayor Bing Leonardia can’t criticize his friend, President Duterte, for his unpalatable remarks, the opposition or anyone in the local government who believes in decency and the rule of law should initiate a discourse or debate that the President should rectify his mistake soon and tell the public he had no intention of sowing terror in Bacolod City.

Bacolodnons should unite and chide the President, and demand from him to remind Espenido or any police personnel for that matter to respect the rule of law and value the fundamental human rights of any civilian.

There should be no more bloodbaths. No more hubris when implementing the law. No ifs. No buts.

(The author, who is now based in New York City, used to be the editor of two local dailies in Iloilo)