By Hader Glang
ZAMBOANGA CITY, the Philippines (AA) - Drug lords in the Philippines are reported to have offered a bounty of P50 million ($10.8 million) for the murder of President-elect Rodrigo Duterte and his incoming national police head, after the president in waiting offered rewards to those who kill drug sellers.
On Thursday, incoming National Police Chief Supt. Ronald "Bato" Dela Rosa was quoted by GMA News as saying that the bounty had been raised to P50 million.
"P50 million for Mayor Duterte, P50 million for me. They increased it because they could not find any takers."
Duterte has been the mayor of the southern city of Davao for seven terms, during which time he transformed the city from a crime ridden hovel to a peaceful and investment-friendly city.
Dela Rosa earlier claimed that the bounties were offered by drug lords incarcerated in the New Bilibid Prison in the southernmost city in the Philippines National Capital Region.
On June 4, Duterte told a huge crowd celebrating his presidential victory that Filipinos who help him in the bloody war against criminality would be rewarded.
“Please feel free to call us, the police, or do it yourself if you have the gun, you have my support,” Duterte said in a televised speech.
Duterte has been extremely vocal about eradicating the Philippines of illegal drugs, urging citizens with guns to shoot and kill drug dealers who resist arrest and fight back.
"My reward now, P5 million if it is drug lord and dead. If it is alive, only P4,999,000," Duterte told reporters in Cebu.
On Thursday, Dela Rosa said he is not even considering the P5 million incentive for capturing drug lords, telling GMA News that "with or without the P5 million offered by Mayor Duterte I will still kill them, I would stamp out illegal drugs and criminality."
He also said he would lead the police force in implementing Duterte's plan to address illegal drug cases and criminality in the next six months.