Malacanang on Tuesday lambasted the upcoming US premiere of a documentary film which tackles President Rodrigo Duterte’s bloody campaign against illegal drugs and warned those planning to watch to be circumspect in reviewing the film.
In a statement, Presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo said that the documentary was “overdramatized” and filled with “unmitigated vilifications” as it explained that illegal drugs is a billion-peso industry in the Philippines.
“The docufilm, together with its so-called cinematic investigation on drug-related deaths, evidently has been deliberately overdramatized for the purpose, apart from putting the Philippines in a bad light, of creating a better cinematic experience for its audience,” Panelo said.
“The Palace is vexed by the continuous spread of disinformation against our country’s campaign against illegal drugs and criminality,” he added.
The film “On The President’s Orders” — produced by award-winning filmmakers James Jones and Olivier Sarbil — is billed as an on-the-ground look at Duterte’s deadly campaign against drug dealers and users.
The Palace spokesman also noted that the film “reeks with malice,” and makes it appear that deaths under the Philippine drug war were ordered by President Duterte.
Malacañang also reiterated that drug-related killings in the country are not state-sponsored, and are a result of violent resistance against authorities.
“These killings result from violent resistance on the part of those sought to be arrested by police agents, proof of which is the death of scores of policemen and serious injuries to hundreds of others,” Panelo said.
“The President, as strict enforcer of the law, does not tolerate abusive police officers. They are not – and will never be – exempted from administrative sanction and criminal prosecution should there be an abuse on their part,” he added.