THE Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency 6 (PDEA-6) said 286 barangays in Western Visayas are considered drug-cleared.
The declaration was made after deliberations by the Regional Oversight Committee (ROC) of the Barangay Drug Clearing Program (BDCP) on Jan. 31, 2019.
The BDCP is a multi-agency group composed of PDEA, Philippine National Police (PNP), Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), and the Department of Health (DOH), as well as the respective local chief executives (LCEs) that have jurisdiction of these barangays.
Alex Tablate, PDEA-6 officer-in-charge, chairs the Regional Oversight Committee.
Tablate said that 286 barangays were finally declared as "drug-cleared" or officially "unaffected" after complying all the requirements and parameters set by Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB) Regulation No. 3, Series of 2017 on Strengthening the Implementation of BDCP.
These requirements include:
Iloilo has the most number of drug-cleared barangays with 109; Antique with 94; Aklan with 35; Capiz with 30; Negros Occidental with 8; and Guimaras with 7.
David Abraham Garcia, PDEA-6 spokesperson, said that that the latest drug-clearing validation prior to yesterday was done on Dec. 13, 2018.
Some of the 286 barangays have submitted their documents months ago but the deliberation was only finished yesterday.
In 2019, Garcia said all PDEA Regional Offices across the country were mandated to continuously implement the program in support of President Rodrigo Duterte's vision to eradicate illegal drugs up to the barangay level.
“The bigger challenge now is on how to sustain their being drug-cleared,” he said.
Photo from Didier Ruef - PhotoShelter