DAVAO ORIENTAL— The Province Government continues to beef up its effort in the fight against illegal drugs.
During a joint meeting with the Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC), Provincial Anti-Drug Abuse Council (PADAC) and the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (PDRRMC) on September 17 at the Honey’s Hotel in the City of Mati, PADAC Secretariat Head Ronald Vidoy, who represented PADAC Action Officer Art Benjie Bulaong, reported the progress made in the efforts to fight drugs.
He said that through the complementation of efforts of the Provincial Local Government Unit and its partner agencies, the Philippine Drugs Enforcement Agency (PDEA) and the Philippine National Police (PNP), the council has now cleared a total of 75 barangays out of 79.
“We are down to four more barangays before we can declare the City of Mati cleared from drugs. If that happens, we are going to be the first province to be declared cleared from drugs, since the ten municipalities have already been cleared,” Vidoy said.
PDEA Provincial Director IA1 Eleazar Arapoc said that they target to clear the remaining barangays from drugs before the year ends. The said barangays are Central, Dahican, Matiao, and Sainz in the City of Mati.
“Tomorrow we are going to declare Barangay Macambol of Mati City as drug cleared barangay by the Regional Oversight Committee. The rest of the four remaining barangays hopefully it can be declared soon by the end of the year or on the first quarter of next year,” Arapoc said.
Together with the City ADAC, the Regional Oversight Committee, Chaired by PDEA Regional Director Antonio Rivera, declared Barangay Macambol, City of Mati, cleared from drugs on September 18. The declaration and ceremonial signing was held at the Sangguniang Panlunsod Session Hall.
Sustainability of Community Rehabilitation
Vidoy said the PADAC will further strengthen the implementation of Community Based Rehabilitation Program (CBRP). CBRP is the second component of the province’s flagship program on the war against illegal drugs, the Lihok NLD or the Lihok Nagkahiusang Lumulupyo Kontra Droga.
“We have already capacitated our Action Officers in the Municipality and Barangays in the implementation of CBRAP. But this time, we will have another training, we will enhance their skill. And I am very sure that this will become sustainable because our LGUs, our MADACs are very active on this program,” he said.
Currently, more than 2,000 drug reformists have already graduated from CBRAP.
Low Crime Rate
Police Colonel Marcial Mariano Magistrado IV, the Provincial Director of the Davao Oriental Police Provincial Office (DOPPO), said that the anti-illegal drugs campaign “is one of the major factors in the down trend of 8 focus crimes.”
Of the 8 focus crimes, murder has dropped from 13 cases in January to August 2018 to 5 cases in the same period this year. Also, on the same period, rape has dropped from 37 to 34 cases, physical injury from 69 to 42 cases, theft from 18 to 11 cases, robbery from 34 to 9 cases, and carnapping of motorcycle from 8 to 5 cases. Meanwhile, murder remained 53 on the same period whereas carnapping of motor vehicles rose from 0 to 1 case still on the same period.
“We have conducted a total of 124 operations on the campaign against illegal drugs. In fact, we have confiscated a total drug value of P219,927,819.01 of marijuana, shabu, and cocaine. With that, aside from police operations in seizing drugs and drug offenders, Davao Oriental Police Provincial Office will continue to complement the effort of the province on anti-illegal drugs campaign. We will constantly conduct barangay and school-based symposia on Anti-Illegal Drugs and implement the Kabataan Kontra Droga at Terorismo (KKDAT) province-wide,” said Pol. Col. Magistrado. Photos by Eden Jhan Licayan