Ortiz: Empowered community key to keeping drug-cleared status of brgys
CEBU CITY, Philippines — A least 17 barangays in Siquijor province have managed to retain their drug-cleared status, a status that these received since 2017.
And the number continues to grow as 90 other drug-cleared barangays are still undergoing revalidation, according to Levi Ortiz, director of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency in Central Visayas (PDEA-7).
Ortiz said that the entire province of Siquijor now has a “zero percent drug affectation rate” despite the pending revalidation of the 90 remaining drug-cleared barangays.
“This success [of the anti-drugs campain] in Siquijor was made possible by the commitment of each barangay and the willpower of local leaders to reclaim their communities from the influence of illegal drugs. Empowered communities are the catalysts for BDCP,” Ortiz said.
Siquijor province has a total of 134 barangays. Of these, 27 were already given drug-free status.
A drug-free status is given to localities whose barangays are “unaffected” by illegal drugs based on the review and revalidation conducted by the Regional Oversight Committee for Barangay Drug Clearing (ROCBDC).
Ortiz said that as of July 2021, they already completed the revalidation of 17 barangays that were again given a drug-cleared status.
The number is expected to increase since an addition of 11 new drug-cleared barangays was recorded last September 28. These came from the municipalities of Maria – 5, Siquijor – 3, and San Juan – 3.
He said that the validation for the 90 other barangays continue.
“Our focus now is on sustainability, helping the barangays maintain their status so they will not be reverted to drug-affected,” he said.
“Sustainability is part of BDCP. In fact, after the barangays are drug-cleared, they will be validated periodically to see if they maintained their status,” he added.
Ortiz said declaring barangays as drug cleared does not necessarily mean that operatives will no longer conduct anti-illegal drug operations in these areas.
He said relentless operations against newly reported suspected drug personalities will continue.
Subscribe to our regional newsletter
Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of Cebudailynews. We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.