The country’s anti-illegal drugs campaign has gained significant strides as combined operatives of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) seized a total of P13.2-billion worth of illegal drugs from March 6-19 alone, said the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG).
DILG Secretary Eduardo M. Año said that it was the biggest drug haul in the history of the anti-illegal drugs program of the government within a two-week period, which include 1,775.2 kilos of shabu and 421.5 kilos of marijuana.
“Isang napakalaking tagumpay sa ating kampanya laban sa iligal na droga ang pagkakasabat ng tone-toneladang shabu at marijuana. Binabati ko ang ating mga drug enforcement agencies sa pangunguna ng PDEA at PNP sa kanilang sipag at pagiging masigasig sa pagsasagawa ng mga anti-illegal drugs operations,” he said in his report to President Duterte during the recent Talk to the People.
According to Año, one of the major operations was conducted in Karuhatan, Valenzuela on March 8 which yielded 160 kilos of shabu worth P1.08-billion and where a Chinese national and Filipina were among those arrested.
Meanwhile, the second major anti-illegal drugs operation was conducted in Infanta, Quezon last March 16, where 1,600 kilos of shabu worth P12-billion were seized and ten suspects were arrested.
The DILG Secretary said that the two operations were part of the 1,794 drug raids conducted from March 6-19 which led to 61 suspects who personally presented themselves or surrendered, 2,471 arrested, and two who died.
“Dahil sa mabilis na aksyon at pagpupursigi ng PNP at PDEA, maraming kabataan, pamilya at kinabukasan ang naisalba mula sa perwisyo at salot na dulot ng iligal na droga. I urge our drug enforcement agencies to further intensify their operations and target big drug syndicates so we can protect and save our people and our country from the ill effects of illegal drugs,” he said.
In reply, Duterte expressed disgust over the gravity of the drug problem from the weight and worth of the seized substances and vowed to support the anti-illegal drugs initiatives of the two agencies.
In the same occasion, Año reported that a total of 90,585 individuals nationwide were caught not wearing face mask during the two-week period, 66,746 were warned, 16,449 were fined/cited, 5,320 were required to do community service, and 2,070 were arrested and charged in court.
Meanwhile, as of March 19, 2022, he said only three cities/municipalities, five barangays, and seven areas are under granular lock down because of the high number of COVID-19 cases and transmission. Because of this, seven households and seven individuals are restricted to their homes to prevent virus transmission.