Pacquiao: Death penalty will help curb drug problem

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines) — Senator Manny Pacquiao said reviving the death penalty will help curb the country's drug problem.

"One of the most heinous crimes recognized today is the problem on illegal drugs. It doesn't choose its victim. This is the reason why I filed Senate Bill Number 185," Pacquiao said in Filipino. He made the remarks at the Philippine National Police Intelligence Group Founding Anniversary on Monday.

SB No. 185 or "An Act Imposing Death Penalty For Heinous Crimes Involving Dangerous Drugs was filed by the neophyte senator in June 2016.

"We should continue to focus on the most pressing issues like drugs and criminality, as well as corruption and terrorism," Pacquiao said.

He lauded the efforts of the police, as well as the Department of Interior and Local Government in curbing the proliferation of illegal drugs and corruption.

Since July 1 last year, 2,250 alleged drug personalities have been killed in the Philippine National Police's anti-drug campaign.

Meanwhile, slightly more than a million drug users and pushers have surrendered under the police's Project Tokhang.

The death penalty in the Philippines was repealed in 2006 after former president Gloria Macapagal Arroyo signed Republic Act 9346, which prohibits the imposition of death penalty in the Philippines.

Since President Rodrigo Duterte took office in May 2016 and declared an all-out war against illegal drugs, calls to restore the death penalty have been made.

There are seven bills in the Senate calling for the reimposition of the death penalty for other crimes such as rape and kidnapping.