The Marcos administration will refocus the war on drugs to include the treatment and rehabilitation of drug users.
“The war on drugs will continue but we have to do it in a different way,” President Marcos said in a television interview on Tuesday.
“Even as we speak, there is a working group putting together (the revisions) …We are trying to formulate how, what is the latest and what’s the best way for the rehabilitation,” he added.
He said the working group is looking for “the upstream of the problem, the prevention.”
“These are all being formulated. And then even on the enforcement side, I’d like to formulate that one,” the President said as he acknowledged the drug war was not mentioned in his first State of the Nation Address as “it is an internal matter.”
Marcos earlier directed Philippine National Police Chief Gen. Rodolfo Azurin Jr. to come up with policies that would ensure the anti-narcotics campaign is compliant with the law.
Azurin ordered an audit of the drug situation in the country, focusing on areas where prominent drug personalities were killed.
He also sought a partnership between the PNP and other government agencies to ensure that the drug supply chain in the country would be “reduced, if not cut totally.”
Despite his intention to refocus the war on drugs, the President maintained his stance not to rejoin the International Criminal Court.
“I don’t see any reason why we should. The ICC is supposed to take action if the country has no functioning judiciary,” he said. “That condition does not exist in the Philippines. So, I don’t see what role ICC is going to play here in the Philippines.”
The government earlier asked the Pre-Trial Chamber of the ICC to deny the request of its prosecutor to resume the body’s investigation into the alleged crimes against humanity committed under the Duterte administration in the implementation of its anti-illegal drug war.
The ICC is seeking to investigate the killings related to Duterte’s war on drugs for the period between July 1, 2016 and March 16, 2019, and those that happened in the Davao region between November 1, 2011 and June 30, 2016.
In its submission, the government asserted the ICC has no jurisdiction over the situation in the Philippines.
Mr. Marcos, for his part, said the country even has “brilliant lawyers.”
“The alleged crimes were committed in the Philippines. They were all committed by Filipinos. Why will we need a foreigner to tell us how to deal with it?” he said.