In his speech in Malacañan Palace on Thursday, January 19, President Rodrigo Duterte named former Buguey town mayor and Licerio Antiporda III as member of “Antiporda drug group.”
It wasn’t clear who he was referring as there are 3 “Licerio” in the Antiporda clan in Buguey.
On Friday, Buguey Mayor Lloyd Antiporda, a member of the prominent political clan in Cagayan, issued a statement belying the accusation of Duterte that any of his family members is involved in illegal drug operations.
Here’s the full text of Antiporda’s official statement:
OFFICIAL STATEMENT OF
MAYOR LLOYD M. ANTIPORDA
20 January 2017
I was disheartened upon hearing the news that our President Rodrigo Roa Duterte has mentioned a certain Licerio Antiporada of Region 2 (Cagayan Valley) as a bigtime drug pusher. If the President is referring to the Antiporda family of the municipality of Buguey, Cagayan, then, certainly, this is an absolute lie, totally baseless and absurd, and a product of misinformation designed by our political opponents to discredit our family.
Prior to May 2016 Synchronized National and Local Elections, we received reports that our political rivals were maliciously implicating us in the illegal drug trade. This story was concocted in order to malign and destroy our family’s name for the selfish political gains of our opponents. Nonetheless, despite this accusation, I and my brother Leeve Christopher garnered the winning votes for the mayoralty and vice-mayoralty race respectively.
Again, just after our beloved President Duterte declared to name more personalities involved in illegal drugs, information reached us that the names of my grandfather former Mayor LICERIO ALVIOR ANTIPORDA SR., my father former Mayor LICERIO ARELLANO ANTIPORDA JR. and my brother former Mayor LICERIO MILLARE ANTIPORDA III were included in the narco-list submitted to the President. They tagged them as the ANTIPORDA DRUG GROUP. However, we were adamant to believe such informations considering that our family has never engaged in the illegal drugs trade. In fact, no case has been filed in court or other quasi-judicial agencies, against any member of our family involving illegal drugs. This only proves that the accusations against our family are totally fabricated and outright lies.
The obvious frailty of the accusations against our family is very apparent in view of certain material facts, among others, herein mentioned. How could they say that my grandfather LICERIO SR. was an illegal drug peddler or protector when the person has long passed away in the year 2001at the age of 91!? It is impossible for him to have involved himself in the illegal drug trade considering the fact that during his incumbency as mayor of Buguey illegal drugs trade has not yet proliferated. The same is true with my father LICERIO JR. whose age now is 74 and has been suffering from severe glaucoma in both eyes since 2012. Also, during the incumbency of my father as the mayor, the municipality of Buguey was once awarded as best in Peace and Order Council in the whole province of Cagayan.
Too, my brother LICERIO III was the barangay captain of Brgy. Centro, Buguey, Cagayan for a period from 1997 to 2007 until he ran and was duly elected Vice-Mayor in the 2007 Elections and as Mayor in the 2010 Elections. After a single term of serving the interest of the Bugueyanos as mayor he decided not to run for re-election and chose to become a private citizen in 2013. In the span of his 3-year term, he provided the Buguey Police Station a decent place to hold its office in a building at the back of the municipal gymnasium with a holding area for arrested culprits, and delivered an LGU-funded patrol car all in his desire to uplift the dignity of the Buguey-PNP personnel and in order for them to better perform their duties and functions including its campaign against illegal drugs.
Verily, aside from the fact that our family has nothing to do with illegal drugs trade, the inclusion of the names of my above-named relatives in the narco-list under the category of local officials is highly implausible in view of the fact that they are no longer in the public service as elected local officials. Worse, my grandfather has long passed away. These alone puts in question the veracity and truthfulness of the narco-list submitted to the President as this is obviously perpetrated by our family’s political rivals who were meant to destroy us in any manner they can.
In addition, the Municipality of Buguey, Cagayan is in accord and totally supportive of President Duterte’s war against illegal drugs. As a matter of fact, we passed Resolutions granting incentives to tipsters and law enforcers in order for them to be encouraged more in performing their mandated duties specifically in putting to stop illegal drugs trade within the municipality and in the province as a whole. (Copies of the said resolutions were furnished to the PNP hierarchy of Region 2)
As early as November 28, 2016, I sent a letter addressed to the Honorable Secretary of the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) vigorously denying and condemning the irresponsible accusations against us which were obviously perpetrated by our political rivals. I even requested that a fair investigation and thorough re-validation of these wrongful accusations be conducted. In short, I and my family’s denial of any involvement in the illegal drug trade is not merely on a piece of paper but the same is coupled by our desire to have a fair and objective investigation in order to ferret out the truth against all of these spiteful allegations.
Despite these wrongful accusations thrown against our family which have been orchestrated by our political opponents, let it be known that we totally support the campaign of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte not only on the war against illegal drugs but also against graft and corruption.
Our hearts are broken for tainting our family’s good name with false stories but certainly we will not turn our back against our detractors. THE TRUTH IS ON OUR SIDE AND IT SHALL SET US FREE!