THE Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency on Friday appealed to other government agencies for help to clear the more than half of all barangays nationwide from illegal drugs.
PDEA Director General Aaron N. Aquino, in a statement, said among the concerns that need to be acted upon are the inactive Barangay Anti-Drug Abuse Councils (BADAC); inactive BADAC Auxiliary Teams (BAT); the refusal of state health officials to sign clearances due to unavailability of drug reformation centers; and the lack of Local Government Unit (LGU) support.
“PDEA cannot do it alone. We need these agencies (local barangays, the Department of Health and the Local Government Units) to step-up,” Aquino said adding that “the sustainability and unified effort of the agencies concerned will lead to the realization of our goal for Drug-Free Philippines by 2022.”
Aquino expressed hope that the “PDEA’s goal to clear the remaining 24,424 drug affected barangays or 58.10 percent out of 42,036 barangays in the country by 2022 can be achieved with the combined efforts of all concerned agencies.”
The PDEA chief said an Oversight Committee on the Barangay Drug-Clearing Program was created to ensure the regularity and the accuracy of the program. It is composed of local representatives from the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), as the Chairperson; Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), as Vice-Chairperson; and the members are representatives from Philippine National Police (PNP), Department of Health (DOH), and Local Government Units (LGUs).
There are defined roles and responsibilities set for each member of the Oversight Committee on Barangay Drug-Clearing Program, as well as the parameters prior the declaration of a “Drug-Cleared Barangay”, pursuant to the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB), Regulation No.3, Series of 2017, on Strengthening the Implementation of Barangay Drug Clearing Program, he added.