MABALACAT CITY – Some 18 out of the 27 barangays here were declared drug-cleared by the Philippine National Police (PNP).

Vice-Mayor Christian Halili, together with the city’s chief of police, Superintendent Juritz Rara, announced the drug-cleared villages during the flag raising ceremony last Monday at Mabalacat City Hall.

The barangays include Bical, Poblacion, San Joaquin, San Francisco, Mamatitang, Tabun, Dolores, Santo Rosario, Sta. Maria, Mangalit, Paralayunan, Bundagul, Sapang Balen, Mawaque Resettlement Center, Santa Ines, Macapagal Village, Calumpang and Cacutud.

The 18 villages, which passed the 14 parameters of the PNP, will receive a P1-million project-based incentive each from the city government, Halili said.

According to Rara, the 14 parameters include the non-availability of drug supply and absence of drug transit and transhipment activity, clandestine drug laboratory, drug warehouse, clandestine chemical warehouse, marijuana cultivation site, drug den, drug pushers, drug users, and protector/coddler and financier, the police official said.

To be declared drug free, a barangay must also have barangay officials implementing anti-drugs drive, active involvement of SK to help maintain the drug-liberated status of the barangay.

The implementation of programs like drug awareness, preventive education and others and the presence of a processing desk for surrenderees will qualify a barangay to be declared as drug free.

The PNP also presented some 13 individuals from the third batch of surrenderees completed the program at the Bahay Pagbabago in Sapang Biabas from November 29 to December 18.

Mayor Marino Morales lauded the PNP, Mabalacat City Anti-Drug Abuse Council, Barangay Councils, Mabalacat City Anti-Drug Abuse Movement, public officials and employees for their efforts to rid the city of illegal drugs.