With 31,895 drug personalities, including those killed and arrested in anti-drug operationsaccounted for by the police in Negros Island Region, in six months of the all-out war against illegal drugs, the Police Regional Office 18 is also targeting the declaration as drug-cleared the 1,052 drug-affected barangays in the region.
There are 1,219 barangays in Negros island.
Chief Supt. Renato Gumban, NIR police director, yesterday claimed that it is possible to achieve, considering the number of drug users and pushers, who have already surrendered and pledged to stop their illegal activities.
Police records show that all the barangays in Bacolod City and Negros Oriental have been affected by drugs, while 81.36 percent, or 489 of the 601 barangays in Negros Occidental, were also affected by the drug menace.
As of December last year, 55 barangays were declared by their respective Barangay Anti-Drug Abuse Councils, in conformity with their mayors and local police chiefs,as drug-cleared, with 31 in Negros Occidental, 24 in Negros Oriental and zero in Bacolod City.
The declaration was based on the parameters set by the Dangerous Drug Board, Gumban, who is set to retire in May this year, said.
A barangay will be categorized as “slightly affected,” if two percent of its total population are drug personalities.
Barangays are classified as “seriously affected” if two percent to 20 percent of its total population are drug users, pushers or financiers.
The existence of at least one clandestine drug laboratory or marijuana plantation in the community, or if more than 20 percent of barangay total population are drug personalities,and there is a reported presence of three or more drugs dens, will merit their classification as “seriously affected” barangay.
A total of 720 moderate drug users also availed of community-based drug rehabilitation programs of the provincial government of Negros Occidental, in tandem with the PNP, Philippine Army and other government agencies, the local government units of Murcia, Ilog and the cities of Sagay, Victorias and Kabankalan and Sibulan town.
The PRO 18 also recommended that the Department of Interior and Local Government should exert pressure on the local government units, down to the barangays, to account for and monitor drug surrenderers.
From July to December last year, 19 drug personalities had been killed in the conduct of police operations, police records further showed.
Of the 133 DUIs (Death Under Investigations), 14 were drug-related, Senior Supt. Melchor Coronel, chief of the Regional Investigations and Detection Management, said.
The PRO 18 also recovered 2.25 kilos of shabu and 101.7 grams of dried marijuana leaves, with a total street market value of P22.5 million.*GPB
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