President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday, March 7 confirmed that there was indeed a group called Davao Death Squad also known as DDS. “If you really ask nandiyan ‘yan sila I am not into excuses, no apologies, pero they should learn more about DDS,” the President said during a Department of Agriculture (DA) event at Malacañang Palace’s Rizal Hall.
“It was organized to combat the — ‘yung Sparrow noon sa Davao,” he added. Sparrow or Special Partisan Unit (SPARU) are NPA assassins or hit squad.
“And you can ask the people, the old guys there. It was then known as the DDS sa Martial Law. Iyong nagbabanatan ‘yung Sparrow pati [DDS],” the President explained.
“But anyway rather than sound to be apologizing for I will answer for my misdeeds and I can go to — I can rot in prison for the right accusation. Huwag naman ‘yang basta itapon mo na lang,” he added.
During an interview with reporters later at Malacañang he said “you should ask Jun Ledesma. He’s a journalist in Davao. He would give you the history of [DDS].
Jun Ledesma, in August 25 Sunstar Davao article, said “DDS was actually a ghost squad conceptualized by then INP (Integrated National Police) Regional Commander Dionisio Tan-Gatue Jr. to counter the offensive of the dreaded NPA Sparrows.”
“He used a very popular NPA propagandist, the late Juan “Jun” Pala who turned anti-communist radio commentator to spread the existence of this phantom which somehow reduced executions perpetrated by the Sparrows,” Ledesma added.
He added during that time Duterte “just passed the bar and was a Tanodbayan investigator and later became Assistant City Fiscal.”
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