Gov. Rafael Nantes, who as treasurer of the Liberal Party raised funds for the campaign of Sen. Benigno Aquino III, has been implicated in a large drugs factory complex on Ilicong Island, Quezon that was raided May 6. Quoting this report from the Manila Bulletin, it says:

“PASG Director for Region 13 Philip A. Placer said his agents followed a suspicious shipment that ended in a safehouse in Sitio Sabang, Barangay Judith in Burdeos on Icolong Island and immediately conducted a raid.

The operation comes amid the leaking out of a US Drug Enforcement Agency (USDEA) report three weeks ago that US$8.4 billion (P384 billion) worth of dangerous drugs were ‘either being generated, passes through or is used by drug syndicates in the Philippines,’ he said.

The same report allegedly underscored an alleged link between the thriving drug trafficking business and local politics as the money generated from the internationally-outlawed trade is suspected of fueling campaigns and a massive attempt to cheat the scheduled elections on May 10.

The revelation by US authorities over the palpable impact of “narcopolitics’ in the elections underscore this reality, alongside the discovery of chemicals in making shabu, said Placer.

He said the leadership of Quezon Governor Rafael Nantes must be placed under scrutiny after the discovery of drug transshipments and manufacturing base on the island of Icolong.

“This is an international (drug operations) and it’s happening here in Burdeos. That should raise alarm on the governor here (Nantes), “In fact, there is suspicion on the local government of letting this happen,” said Placer.

The discovery of transshipments in the island stares the nation in the face and the country will become a center for trans-shipment point for high-value drugs, a global supplier and consumer of methamphetamine hydrochloride (shabu).

It raises questions linked to the USDEA report which, essentially, warned of drug money making its way to unscrupulous politicians and making the hotly-contested presidential election susceptible to influence by this massive illegal operations inimical to national security.

Placer as well as well-placed sources from the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) said there has been no representation from the Quezon provincial capitol to address the drug threat in the province.

Incidentally, Nantes, a former congressman and who is frequently seen in Metro Manila, is the national treasurer of the Liberal Party whose standard-bearer Senator Benigno Simeon Aquino III happens to be the frontrunner in presidential surveys.

The full transcript of this report can be found in this link: