IT’S the stuff that terrifies and awes, blazing through today’s unfolding history towards failure or triumph. Vice-President Leny Robredo seems to be the only one convinced that she can take on the job as anti-drug czar. She says everyone else, her children included, has tried to stop her. All of a sudden she finds herself in a crucible fraternizing or struggling with forces that her courage and single-mindedness have provoked to be utterly determined to bring her down.

    With the national limelight shifting from his boss to her, Robredo’s former vice-presidential rival, House Speaker Alan Cayetano, tried to rein her in from talking too much to the news media. It can’t be helped since political controversy and judicial injustice have fed on her mystique, allure and frailty – a combination that the national media relishes.

    Suddenly, a nation is awed by a woman taking over the men in 21 well-funded and powerful government agencies who could not get their acts together to get rid of the drug menace. Suddenly, we are awed at one woman, standing a breath away from the presidency and declaring to thousands of blood-thirsty drug operatives and to the President who had put them together that one innocent life is so precious to her that she is willing to risk her own to save it.

    Robredo is not out to halt the drug war but to make it truly relentless on all fronts of the government campaign. While PDEA chief Aaron Aquino and PNP OIC Archie Ocampo are opposed to Robredo personally witnessing the police drug operations, the unabashed Duterte loyalist Sen. Ronald dela Rosa is pushing her to join buy-busts or entrapments apparently to make sure that she faces actual danger.

    The former PNP chief and principal implementor of the much-abused “Tokhang,” who virtually froths in the mouth when denying any EJK, was at the forefront of the cold-blooded killings. But he has admitted today that he was never near one. He knew he had to live with fabricated police and accomplishments reports to get things done for Mr. Duterte.

    Confused over terribly-varying statistics on EJKs, Robredo simply wants to convey an honest and fearless leadership. A fatal bullet ends a looming Robredo presidency, but an injured Robredo will make it a strong possibility.

    The Baguio City police is looking deeper into the drowning of a fourth-class cadet in the PMA, the same class of hazing fatality Darwin Dormitorio. The police report tells of the hapless cadet who failed the first phase of water training but was made to take the next stage requiring him and other cadets to dive at the deepest part of the pool.

    The police suspect that his death may have something to do with case of the upper cadets’ involvement in the brutal maltreatment of Dormitorio. Seasoned police officers rarely believe in coincidences, the downing incident coming as it did just three months after the killing of Dormitorio.

    Decades of ignoring and condoning rampant hazing in the academy have toughened the hardened remnants of this criminal act. The Commandant of Cadets, Brig General Romeo Brawner, Jr. should be more thorough and genuinely committed to his job.


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