27.9K villages ‘drug-cleared’ as of Oct. – PDEA

Close to 28,000 villages across the country have been cleared of illegal drugs since the start of the administration of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) said Friday. Based on the data released by the PDEA, a total of 27,903 out of the 42,045 barangays have been declared drug-cleared as of October 2023. The drug-clear status follows the certification of members of the oversight committee on the Barangay Drug-Clearing Program (BDCP). Under the BDCP, law enforcement agencies take care of supply reduction efforts to disrupt the manufacture and distribution of dangerous drugs, while government agencies and local government units focus on demand and harm reduction strategies to prevent taking and wanting illegal drugs, and reform drug offenders to become productive citizens of society. PDEA said authorities have seized PHP30.10 billion worth of narcotics nationwide as of this month. The total amount of seized narcotics included more than 4,000 kg. of shabu, 47.8 0 kg. of cocaine, 53,023 ecstasy tablets, and 2,974.12 kg. of marijuana. The same data also showed 68,599 suspects were arrested, including 4,731 high-value targets, in 49,863 anti-illegal drugs operations from July 1, 2022 to Oct. 31 this year. Authorities dismantled 781 drug dens and one clandestine shabu laboratory during the same period. Earlier, Interior Secretary Benhur Abalos commended the PDEA, the Philippine National Police (PNP) and different drug enforcement units for their perseverance in the government's anti-illegal drugs campaign. 'Saludo ako sa sipag at pagsisikap ng PDEA, PNP, NBI at iba pang awtoridad sa mga hakbang nito kontra iligal na droga sa ating mga komunidad. Isa na naman itong malaking tagumpay para sa pamahalaan at para sa kampanyang Buhay Ingatan, Droga'y Ayawan (I salute the diligence and efforts of PDEA, PNP, National Bureau of Investigation and other authorities in their measures against illegal drugs in our communities. This is another big success for the government and fo r the BIDA campaign),' Abalos said in a statement. 'Higit sa lahat, isa itong malaking tagumpay para sa magandang kinabukasan ng ating kabataan (Above all, this is a great victory for the bright future of our youth),' he added. PHP2.9-M tablets for BIDA In a related development, the DILG has received 300 computer tablets worth PHP2.9 million donated by Cherry Mobile Philippines to enhance the government's anti-drug campaign. Abalos said the donation was part of a memorandum of agreement that the Department and the mobile firm signed in August for the BIDA program, the DILG's intensified and holistic campaign against illegal drugs. The 300 tablets will be distributed to select community-based Drug Rehabilitation Centers. Cherry Mobile will likewise provide scholarships for qualified out-of-school youth. 'Thank you for answering the call for a united front against the drug menace. Thank you for believing in the spirit of BIDA and for standing with us in this fight,' Abalos told the mobile technology comp any. Source: Philippines News Agency