Bato asks for Church’s forgiveness
NAGA CITY --- Former Philippine National Police (PNP) and Bureau of Correction (BuCor) Chief Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa yesterday asked forgiveness from Archbishop Rolando Tria Tirona of the Archdiocese of Caceres. “It’s within my conscience, though I did not kill them personally, it happened during my watch. Ako po ay maka diyos na tao kaya humihingi ako ng tawad kasama na diyan pati mga pulis ko na namatay sa war on drugs”. (I’m a God fearing person and I’m asking forgiveness together with these are my men who were killed in line of duty), the former police chief added. “Ako ay maka diyos na tao kaya malaking kargo de consensya ko ang nanyari, many times I have asked forgiveness to God every time a person is killed in our fight against drugs,” he said in an interview. When people tagged me as a “mamatay tao” I always visit a church and pray and seek pardon and spiritual guidance. When asked what Tirona’s response was during their 5-minute engagement, Bato said: “the archbishop embraced and blessed me and gave me special something that would protect me wherever I go.” He said that the government’s war on drugs during his watch has claimed the lives of 4,800 people, and arrested 130,000 drug addicts and pushers. Meanwhile, Dela Rosa in an interview said that given a chance to become senator he will push for 3 important Bills “First, I will push for the return of death penalty for drug traffickers, not for users and pushers; second, the return of police training to PNP from Public Safety College; and, third, provision of legal assistance to all Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW),” Dela Rosa explained. He said the Philippines continue to be the destination for illegal drugs because the country does not impose tough penalties against drug traffickers, unlike in neighboring countries, such as Malaysia, Singapore, and Indonesia. Dela Rosa said he decided to foray into politics to help President Rodrigo Duterte in the latter’s war against corruption and drugs. Dela Rosa attended the symposium on “Public Awareness on the Government’s Campaign against Illegal Drugs” at Naga College Foundation here where he was the guest of honor and speaker.