WITH help from the barangays, the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency hoped on Thursday to lower the drug involvement of barangay officials from 40 percent to 30 percent.
Director General Isidro Lapeña said the barangays must be cleared “yearly” of the drug menace in four years.
Citing President Rodrigo Duterte’s statement, Lapeña said 40 percent of barangay officials were linked to illegal drugs.
With the recent activation of Operation: Double Barrel Reloaded by the Philippine National Police, the PDEA leads the barangay drug clearing program and assists in investigation of suspected drug personalities.
In addition, PDEA’s presence is mandatory in PNP anti-drug operations for high-value targets and high-impact operations.
He suggested a target of 30 percent of barangays cleared with the drug problem every year.
As of March 29, Metro Manila had the highest drug affectation of 97.30 percent with the cities of Caloocan, Navotas, Valenzuela, Muntinlupa and Taguig obtaining a 100 percent.
Las Piñas City has the least affectation of 55 percent.
Since July 1, 2016, 39 barangay chairpesrons and 53 barangay councilors have been arrested for their involvement in illegal drugs.
Lapeña challenged the officers and members of Liga ng mga Barangay provincial, city and municipal chapters during the recent National Assembly of the Liga ng mga Barangay sa Pilipinas to clear their areas of drugs.
“As indicated in Republic Act 9165, or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002, and the Local Government Code, all barangay officials have a role to play in the national anti-drug campaign. It is either you are with us or you are against us. If your barangay is drug affected and you did not take action to address the problem or clear your barangay, you can be tagged as protectors,” he warned the local officials.