Senator Ronald “Bato” Dela Rosa said he would rather face local courts and not participate in the possible reopening of the investigation by the International Criminal Court (ICC) into former President Rodrigo Duterte’s drug war Dela Rosa stressed that it will be an “insult” to the Philippines’ justice system and a “total infringement of our sovereignty” if the ICC is allowed to come into the country and investigate the anti-illegal drug campaign, GMA News reported.
Dela Rosa was head of the Philippine National Police (PNP) during the early years of the Duterte administration. He was also instrumental in “Oplan Tokhang” as part of the Duterte administration’s drug war.
“I’m the number two accused and you want me to abide by their investigation? Why should I submit to their jurisdiction when we have a Supreme Court here that can try us if we have done something wrong? Why them? Why should I face them when they don’t know the problem of our country and what our government is doing?” Dela Rosa said.
The ICC, in an order dated July 14, invited the Philippines to provide information on the planned reopening of the probe until September 8, 2022.
Senator Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel III on Monday meanwhile noted that since the ICC is an independent international organization, it should be allowed to continue the probe.
However, he said the ICC should have a firm stand on their planned investigation. He said it’s a waste of time if we always react to all the developments within the ICC.
Sen. Robin Padilla said the ICC cannot force the Philippine government to allow the ICC to conduct the investigation. “They can just observe, It’s hurting if they investigate and give orders to us,” he said, adding that “Andres Bonifacio will be mad at them,” he told reporters in jest.
Sen. Nancy Binay said the ICC probe is a legal process and should be allowed its due course.
“Let us follow what’s the legal process. It indeed the ICC has no personality, that is something perhaps the Department of Justice can decide on,” she added. With Macon Ramos-Araneta and Rey E. Requejo
The Office of the Solicitor General meanwhile said it may challenge the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court in conducting the said probe.
Solicitor General Menardo Guevarra on Monday revealed this option after the ICC asked the Philippine government to comment on the proposed reopening of the investigation on the drug operations during the previous administration.
The OSG meanwhile said President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has yet to discuss the case thoroughly with anyone.