A regional director of party-list candidate, People’s Volunteer Against Illegal Drugs (PVAID), was arrested in a buy-bust operation for allegedly selling methamphetamine or “shabu.”
ABS-CBN News reported that Jerklie Abdulkarim and two other individuals were apprehended by the National Bureau of Investigation-Task Force Against Illegal Drugs in Dasmariñas, Cavite on Tuesday.
The NBI said that the PVAID regional director was the mastermind of the group selling half a kilo of shabu for more than P1 million.
Abdulkarim also allegedly used a minor as a drug courier.
Lawyer Jonathan Galicia, chief of the NBI Task Force Against Illegal Drugs, said that the group has been selling drugs in Cavite and the National Capital Region for years.
He also assured the public that they will further investigate the matter.
“What’s scary about this case is that these people are using their position para mawala attention sa kanila,” Galicia said in the report.
“They’re using an organization that is supposed to be fighting illegal drugs and this guy is doing the opposite… when these people get elected mas powerful, mas connected, mahihirapan to catch these people,” he added.
Meanwhile, Abdulkarim admitted that he is an officer of PVAID but denied that they are involved in the crime. He also denied using a minor to deliver drugs.
Retired Colonel Rodrigo Bonifacio, PVAID’s first nominee, condemned Abdulkarim’s reported involvement and commended the NBI for the arrest.
Bonifacio also said that they will conduct their own internal investigation and cooperate with the bureau.
“Wala akong alam sa ginagawa niya… kami mismo ang gagawa ng hakbang para mawala sa record namin ang mga ganyang klaseng tao sa aming grupo,” he said.
Bonifacio added that they will summon their other officers to explain Abdulkarim’s actions.
“Galit ako, sabi ko nga sa kanila, kabilinbilinan ko na ayaw ko ng ganyan… maayos ang track record namin. But with the offense of one of our officials, we will not tolerate that,” he said.
Based on the ID cards retrieved, Abdulkarim is part of the “Diehard Marcos Supporters” group.
His arrest went viral on the internet where Filipinos commented that the incident was “ironic” as he is an officer of a party-list candidate that is against illegal drugs.
“Well, this is quite ironic,” a Twitter user commented in response to the news.
“Naging party-list FOR illegal drugs?” another online user quipped.
“Oh how the turn tables,” wrote a different Filipino.
Another Twitter user shared a meme in response to the incident.
It featured a character from the famous “Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!” animated series in which the protagonists usually unmask villains disguising themselves to do crimes.
— . (@deathxortaxes) January 25, 2022
“Shabu” is among those that are considered as “dangerous drugs” under Philippine law.
Republic Act 9165 prohibits the possession of the substance, which is also called “ice” or “meth.”
“It is the policy of the State to safeguard the integrity of its territory and the well-being of its citizenry, particularly the youth, from the harmful effects of dangerous drugs on their physical and mental well-being, and to defend the same against acts or omissions detrimental to their development and preservation,” part of the law reads.
The PVAID group visions itself to be “the leading non-government organization in the promotion of the anti drug campaign through preventive education and values formation.”
It was founded by Bonifacio and his supporters.