4 Bacolod villages declared free from drugs

The Regional Oversight Committee during the deliberation for drug clearing of villages held in Iloilo City on August 28. (PDEA-6 photo)

By: Glazyl Y. Masculino

BACOLOD City – Four villages here were cleared of illegal drugs during the 16th Regional Oversight Committee (ROC) deliberation held in Iloilo City last August 28.

Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA)-Negros Occidental head Nicolas Gomez identified the drug-free villages as Barangays 15, 17, 18, and 24.

These barangays were added to the first village here which was already declared unaffected during last year’s deliberation, Gomez said.

Gomez told Daily Guardian yesterday that 11 barangays here applied to undergo the deliberation process but only four passed the evaluation.

Gomez said these five villages should maintain its status because PDEA can make a recommendation for the revocation of their drug-cleared status if there’s a report on the existence of illegal drugs in their areas.

“They will still be placed under monitoring,” he added.

He said the four villages here were among the 206 barangays which passed the evaluation out of the 323 barangays which underwent the deliberation last Wednesday.

The 206 barangays were from the 33 municipalities of the provinces of Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Guimaras, Iloilo, and Bacolod City in Negros Occidental.

The deliberation conducted is a product of the intelligence validation of PDEA, and the Philippine National Police (PNP), in coordination with the Department of Health (DOH), and Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), which are members of the ROC led by the PDEA.

PDEA-6 is hoping to achieve total clearing of all barangays on or before 2022.

On July 4, the ROC has declared 21 villages from the towns of Hinoba-an, Pontevedra, E.B. Magalona, and Manapla; and cities of Sagay, Silay, Bago, and Victorias in the province free from illegal drugs.

Almost 40 villages in the province were already cleared from illegal drugs since January this year.

More than 2,300 barangays have already been officially declared unaffected from illegal drugs in the whole region.