Antonio Cando Halili supported Duterte’s war on drugs but criticised the security forces’ work. In October 2017, he was stripped of his supervisory powers over the local police and accused of being involved in drug trafficking himself.
Manila (AsiaNews/Agencies) – The Filipino mayor who paraded suspected drug traffickers in the streets of his city was killed this morning during a flag-raising ceremony.
Mayor Antonio Cando Halili was declared dead on arrival in hospital from a single bullet wound to the chest, sustained as he and civil servants sang the national anthem in Tanauan, a city in Batangas Province southwest of the capital Manila.
Halili had become famous for introducing his city to the "walk of shame" of alleged drug dealers.
The Philippine National Police claims to have killed more than 4,200 suspects during operations in the bloody war on drugs launched by President Rodrigo Duterte two years ago.
The campaign has led to condemnation by numerous national and international human rights organisations.
Despite polls showing the widespread support for the Filipino president, the Catholic Church is one of the most authoritative voices to complain about the deaths.
Back in October 2017, Halili was stripped of his supervisory powers over local police due to a proliferation of illegal drugs in his city, amid allegations by the PNP that he may have been involved.
In August 2016 - the second month of the crackdown - Halili said he backed Duterte's campaign but believed drug kingpins should be the main targets, otherwise thousands of people would be killed.
He also expressed concern over the way police conducted the war on drugs and the reliability of their intelligence.