27 candidates tagged in narco list won in midterm polls – PNP Chief

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Twenty-seven politicians who were tagged in the President’s narco list were elected into office from the midterm polls, the Philippine National Police (PNP) chief said Monday (FILE PHOTO)

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, May 20) — Twenty-seven politicians who were tagged in the President’s narco list were elected into office from the midterm polls, the Philippine National Police (PNP) chief said Monday.

P/Gen. Oscar Albayalde did not name names but said some were elected as governors and mayors in Central Luzon and CALABARZON.

“Out of 47 na nasa narco list, 37 ang tumakbo, 27 ang nanalo,” Albayalde told the media.

[Translation: Out of 47 who were in the narco list, there were 37 who ran for office, and 27 who won.]

He said investigation on these people will continue if new developments come up.

“Continuous 'yung pag-iimbestiga sa kanila and as the [Interior Secretary] have said ‘pag meron nakitang ebidensya laban sa kanila, they will be filing cases both criminal and administrative,” he said.

[Translation: The investigation against them is continuous and as the Interior Secretary has said, if they see evidence against them, they will be filing cases both criminal and administrative.]

Senator Richard Gordon called for an investigation on the victory of these supposed drug-linked politicians. He urged the COMELEC, Anti-Money Laundering Council, Bureau of Internal Revenue, National Bureau of Investigation and PNP to launch a joint probe on vote-buying incidents related to the campaigns of the accused.

“While vote-buying may have become commonplace to some people, the inordinate, flagrant and scandalous vote-buying in areas where the narco-politicians won must be investigated,” Gordon said in a statement.

He also cited possible conspiracies between corrupt candidates to secure their positions and to ensure posts for their family members. He claimed that Zambales First District Representative Jeffrey Khonghun and his son Mayor Jefferson Khonghun, who were both tagged in the narco list, “engaged in massive vote-buying” during the elections.

“It is dangerous for us now because Zambales is a coastline province right next to Scarborough Shoals. It would be so easy to bring in drugs,” Gordon warned.

President Rodrigo Duterte named 46 people from a list of over 80 alleged narco politicians in March, from vice mayor to representative. The Interior Department said the list has been validated in coordination with the PNP, the military and the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency.