DAVAO CITY, Philippines – President Rodrigo Duterte took the opportunity during the inauguration of the mega drug rehab facility in Nueva Ecija to lambast anew critics of his anti-drug war.

“When you are a friend, you do not treat him badly before the public. You do not humiliate an ally,” Duterte said of the the United States and the European Union.

Duterte said: “At all cost you save the friendship as an ally so that you can help each other in the world of geopolitics.”

“Kung kaibigan mo wag mo akong pahiyain (If you are my friend do not shame me),” he said, adding that an ally should help him just like what Chinese billionaire businessman Huang Rulun did in financing the establishment of the 10,000-bed drug facility inside Fort Magsaysay.

The US and EU had been vocal against the Philippines anti-drug war under the Duterte administration. A US Senator opposed the selling of assault rifles to the Philippines citing concerns about the killings related to the government’s campaign against drugs.

To this, Duterte said: “Kung hayaan ko magkakaproblema ako  sa bayan ko (If I do not do anything, I will have a big problem in my country). It will become a failed state like what happened in Latin America.”

He said his hands are tied with the budget that he is spending since he “came midterm” and is spending a budget that was crafted last year.

Rulun, in his speech, said he supports Duterte’s “admirable campaign” and has donated P1.4 billion for the construction of two drug rehabilitation center with a total area of 100,000 square meters. The first phase covers 60,000 square meters and can accommodate 10,000 patients.

“Drugs wreck the country and bring ruin to the people. It is the common enemy of all mankind,” Rulun of the Century Golden Resources Group said.

He said since Duterte assumed the office, the president has waged war on drugs “with an irresistable force.”

Health Secretary Paulyn Ubial said the establishment of the first Mega Drug Abuse Treatment and Rehabilitation Center is part of the government’s efforts to find ways in rehabilitating drug dependents.

Ubial admitted that the government lacked the facilities to accommodate hundreds of thousands of drug surrendees.

“The 44 treatment and rehab centers nationwide, mostly private, can only accommodate 3,000 beds or patients because the DOH at that time had only 14 drug rehab facilities, five were run by local government units and the other 25 were managed by the private sector,” she said.

During the inauguration, the government also recognized other donors including Jorge Consunji, president and chief operating officer of DM Consunji Inc., Kevin Andrew Tan, first vice president at Megaworld Corporation, Francis Cruz of Frey-fil Corporation and Engineer Joyrence Agas of the Mapua Institute of Technology. (davaotoday.com)

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