President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday said former Iloilo City Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog would have been among those mayors killed in the war on drugs if he did not leave the country.
“‘Yung isa hindi na umuwi, si Magtibay (sic), I have been looking for him. Hindi na sya umuwi kasi papatayin ko talaga siya,” Duterte said in a speech in Tarlac City.
Mabilog was one of the mayors tagged by Duterte as alleged drug protectors.
But the former mayor repeatedly denied the President’s allegation.
Duterte mentioned Mabilog and other mayors killed in drug operations to prove that the poor were not only the targets of the war on drugs.
“Sabihin nila, bakit si Duterte pinapatay lang niya ‘yung, mahihirap?. You are wrong. Hindi ko pinapatay ang mahihirap. Ang pinapatay kong mahihirap ‘yung kriminal,” he said.
“‘Yung mayaman hindi? Meron rin. Meron din mga mayors namatay. As a matter of fact dalawa na (Ozamiz City Mayor Reynaldo Parojinog and Albuera, Leyte Mayor Rolando Espinosa),” the President added.
In his Iloilo visit last Feb. 22, Duterte said “all intelligence reports” he received linked Mabilog to Illegal drugs.
“Sinasabi ko na target kita kasi lahat ng impormasyon na pumapasok sa akin mula sa Philippine Army, Philippine Navy, Air Force and the Philippine National Police nandoon ang panagalan niya.”
In Sept. last year, Mabilog, his wife Marivic and their children left the country due to security concerns.
He was dismissed from service by the Ombudsman in October 2017 for his alleged unexplained wealth.
Mabilog’s second dismissal order in connection with the alleged anomalous towing deal was issued in January this year.IMT