MANILAClose to 300,000 drug surrenderers have graduated from the Recovery and Wellness Program (RWP) undertaken both by the government and the private sector across the country as part of President Rodrigo Duterte administration's campaign to holistically address the illegal drug problem.
Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) Assistant Secretary Marie Rafael said from July 1, 2016 to October 31, 2018, a total of 292,108 surrenders completed the program.
The figure can be broken down into 142,280 surrenderers who graduated from the RWP initiated by the Philippine National Police (PNP) and 149,828 from supported community centers.
For now, we have five general interventions being conducted by law enforcement agencies, while six community-based from local government units under by the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and rehabilitation program under the Department of Health (DOH), Rafael said during the Real Numbers press briefing in Camp Crame Tuesday.
She added that from January to October this year, there were 3,364 individuals, consisting of 3,323 inpatient and 41 outpatient, undergoing rehabilitation in health facilities.
For his part, PNP spokesperson, Chief Supt. Benigno Durana said authorities dismantled a total of 271 drug dens and shabu laboratories in the country from June 2016 to October 2018.
Durana said out of this figure, 258 are drug dens and 13 are clandestine shabu laboratories while various types of illegal drugs worth PHP25.06 billion were seized.
This amount includes 3,276.42 kilograms of shabu with an estimated street value of PHP18.31 billion.
Durana also said that at least 8,935 out of the 42,044 barangays (villages) in the country have been declared drug-cleared as of October 31.
As of this posting, a total of 23,161 barangays have yet to be cleared of illegal drugs. However, the PNP together with the PDEA, stressed that the government's campaign against illegal drugs is continuing.
Real Numbers data showed authorities also arrested 161,193 individuals involved in illegal drugs during the said period.
Durana said included in the total figure are 600 government workers257 of them elected officials, 65 uniformed personnel, and 278 government employees.
Around 113,570 anti-illegal drugs operations were conducted by joint law enforcement agencies during the period.
As of October 2018, the consolidated report showed that 4,999 drug suspects have died during the anti-illegal drugs operations.
Meanwhile, PDEA spokesperson Derrick Carreon said a total of 287 members of law enforcement agencies were dismissed from service for drug use while 130 personnel were sacked for other drug-related offenses.
Carreon also reported that the government has shelled out PHP49.23-million reward to 56 informants for providing information on suspected illegal drug activity in their community from the period of July 2016 to October 2018.
Carreon said the cash rewards were given under PDEA's Operation "Private Eye" (OPE)a scheme designed to encourage private citizens to report any suspected illegal drug activity in their community.
He said the Private Eye Rewards Committee, composed of members from the academe, non-government organizations, law enforcement, religious and business sectors approved the resolution granting monetary rewards to the informants after a careful and thorough deliberation.
Operation Private Eye is one way of encouraging the public to help the government's anti-drug campaign by providing cash reward for information that result in the seizure of illegal drugs and arrest of drug personalities, Carreon said.
He added that under "Operation Lawmen", 33 operating units have also received the monetary reward amounting to PHP17.94 million for their meritorious anti-drug operations on the same period.
Carreon said the joint law enforcement agencies rescued 1,820 minors during the anti-illegal drug operations from July 2016 to October this year.
The granting of rewards was based on the creation of Operation Lawmen pursuant to Section 22 of RA 9165 which was institutionalized through Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB) Regulation Number 1, Series of 2016 and took effect on September 3, 2016.
Operation Lawmen is the reward or award program for law enforcers or members of the anti-illegal drug units/teams or task forces including the support unit/s, Carreon pointed out adding that this reward scheme will boost the morale of different law enforcement operating teams in conducting anti-drug operations.
Of the 1,820 minors arrested, there 976 are pushers; 487 possessors; 255 users; 91 visitor of drug den; six drug den maintainers; three drug den employees and two cultivators.
According to the Department of Social and Welfare Development (DSWD), the rescued minors, after court proceedings, will be turned over to the Bahay Pagasa centers of LGUs within eight hours of police custody, before turning them over to the DSWD.
Since they are minors, the DSWD said they would not be put behind bars together with hardened criminals. (PNA)
Source: Philippine News Agency