MANILA: The Palace on Tuesday, Sept. 17, slammed as “derogatory and biased, if not outright fiction” a British-American documentary on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs.
In slamming “On the President’s Orders” made by Frontline PBS, Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said it, 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.”
He said moviegoers were, after all, more inclined to watch a “thrilling film that depicts a country as menacing instead of a lackluster motion picture showcasing its progress and development.”
“Even the title of the docufilm reeks with malice, making it appear that the drug-related deaths were done upon the orders of President Duterte,” Panelo said.
Panelo reiterated the killings in the drug war were not state-sponsored, and were the result either of drug offenders resisting arrest or of members of a drug syndicate “who kill each other because of, among others, rivalry, botched deals and swindling.”
According to Panelo, it was “obvious that the film medium is riding on the coattails of the President’s international popularity and success, and is being used as a medium to espouse a one-sided information bordering (on) black propaganda aimed at gullible foreign audiences who know little or (have) zero knowledge about the Philippines and its government.”
He said it was easy to choose video clips or soundbites that “serve the purpose of the filmmakers in falsely portraying a dangerous Philippines and a murderous government while omitting scenes that reflect the opposite.”
He noted the drug war was still popular among Filipinos, with 7 out of 10 Filipinos being satisfied with the way President Duterte handles the campaign.
Three years to the war on drugs and residents in the country now feel safer and secure ..,” Panelo added.