PNP bares drug war gains

A TOTAL of 6,600 armed drug offenders dead, more than 240,000 others arrested and over 11,000 barangays already cleared of illegal drug trafficking and abuse.

These are among the Philippine National Police’s accomplishments in the war on drugs from the day President Duterte assumed office on July 1, 2016 up to last May 31.

The PNP headed by Director General Oscar D. Albayalde bared their anti-drug report during a command conference at Camp Crame which was followed by another joint PNP-Armed Forces conference with President Duterte at Malacanan Palace.

Official PNP records showed that during the period, PNP anti-narcotics operatives arrested 240,565 suspected drug personalities in 153,276 operations across the country.

Those operations also led to the surrender of 1,283,409 confessed drug dealers and users as a result of the vaunted PNP Oplan: Tokhang.

The PNP Directorate for Operations said that from January to May this year, the continuing crackdown against drugs resulted in the killing of 822 armed drug personalities following gunbattles with the police. Another 38,937 known shabu and marijuana dealers nationwide were arrested in 25,338 anti-drug operations.

The past 5 months also saw 2,755 confessed drug personalities surrendering as a result of the PNP Oplan: Tokhang, the biggest number of them -281-  coming from Calabarzon region which is under the jurisdiction of the Police Regional Office 4-A headed by Brigadier General Edward E. Carranza. The PRO4-A conducted a total of 502 Oplan: Tokhang activities in different areas of Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon.

The PNP said that as of last April, 20,471 or 48.69 percent of the country’s 42,045 barangays are yet to be declared as drug-free. Of the total, 282 barangays were tagged as “seriously affected” by drugs while 10,835 are “moderately affected.” Another 9,354 are known as “slightly affected.”

11K bgys cleared — PDEA

The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency said that as of last January 31, more than 11,000 barangays nationwide have already been declared as “drug-free” with nearly 22,000 others yet to be cleared of drugs.

PDEA chair, Director General Aaron N. Aquino said that before declaring a barangay free from illegal drug activities, the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD) must convene and validate the non-availability of drug supply in the area and the absence of drug transit activity, clandestine drug laboratory and chemical warehouse, marijuana cultivation site, drug den, drug pushers and users.

Aquino added that the activation of Barangay Drug Abuse Councils, or BADACs, is very crucial in the success of the implementation of the campaign.

During the period, a total of 301 drug dens and shabu laboratories were smashed following operations which netted nearly P26 billion worth of dangerous drugs including some P19.14 billion worth of shabu.

The PDEA has opened community-based reformation centers to rehabilitate drug offenders. Known as Balay Silangan Reformation Center or “house of hope”, the PDEA’s temporary shelter intends to reform drug offenders  into self-sufficient and law-abiding members of society.

Balay Silangan Reformation Program is aimed at teaching drug offenders’ livelihood programs and life skills to prepare them for reintegration into society.

The PDEA aims to clear 24,424 barangays from illegal drugs by 2022. “PDEA has committed itself to clear the remaining 24,424 drug-affected barangays nationwide by 2022. These barangays represent 58.10 percent out of 42,036 barangays in the country that are still plagued by the drug menace,” said Aquino.