'Let's see if they can arrest me," says Bato de la Rosa after ICC verdict | Global News

‘Let’s see if they can arrest me,” says Bato de la Rosa after ICC verdict

By: - Reporter / @MAgerINQ
/ 06:03 PM July 18, 2023

Senator Ronald “Bato” M. Dela Rosa in a Senate hearing (File picture from Voltaire Domingo/Senate PRIB)

MANILA,  Philippines— Former top cop and Senator Ronald “Bato” dela Rosa is considering limiting his movements, now that the International Criminal Court (ICC) will proceed with its probe on the drug war of the Duterte administration in the Philippines.

He may now just travel between his hometown of Davao city and Manila.


“Para sigurado, dito lang ako— Davao, Manila lang ako. Dyan lang ang byahe ko,” de la Rosa said in a phone interview with Senate reporters on Tuesday.


(To be sure, I’ll only be here—in Davao, and Manila. I will just limit my travels there.)

“Mahirap na. Wala tayong kwan doon sa ibang bansa,” he explained.

(It may be difficult now. We don’t have … there in other countries.)

Dela Rosa, who spearheaded the anti-drug war when he was the police chief, was among those named in the ICC complaint for alleged crimes against humanity.

Government had tried to stop the probe but this was rejected by ICC.

The senator said he was no longer surprised by this ruling, saying he knew from the start that the Court was determined to continue its probe on the case.


Since Philippines is no longer under the ICC, dela Rosa sees no reason why he should cooperate with its investigation.

He is also confident he would not get arrested in the country, citing the administration’s repeated stand that it would not recognize ICC’s jurisdiction over the Philippines.

“If they can’t protect me, I will protect myself,” dela Rosa said.

Asked how, he said, “Hanapin nyo ako. Hanapin nyo ako. Nasa Pilipinas ako. I am within the territorial jurisdiction of the Philippines.”

(Find me. Find me. I am in the Philippines. I am within the territorial jurisdiction of the Philippines.)

He added, though, that he might just limit his trips to countries that are not “ICC friendly” like China, Russia and Israel.

But this does not mean he would go into hiding, in case ICC issues a warrant of arrest against him, said the senator.

“Ah, hindi ah. Bakit ako magtatago? Senador ako ng Pilipinas. Bakit ako magtatago? Hanapin nila ako,” he dared the international body.

(Oh no. I won’t. Why would I hide? I am a senator of the Philippines. Why would I hide? Let them find me.)

“Kung mahanap nila ako, then, ang next step na ay arestuhin na ako. So, tingnan na natin kung maaresto nila ako,” he said.

(If they do find me, then, the next step will be to arrest me. So, let’s see if they can arrest me.)

“Hanapin nila ako. Nandyan lang ako sa Senado,” dela Rosa pointed out.

(Let them find me. I’m just there in Senate)

The senator hopes the Senate will, at least, come up with a stand on the issue.


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