“ANY effort and move by the government, as well as the Philippine National Police (PNP), to stop the proliferation of illegal drugs in Bacolod City is welcome and is good for the city.”
This was stressed by Bacolod City Lone District Representative Greg Gasataya on Friday, October 11, after Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo earlier confirmed that the reassignment of Police Major Jovie Espenido to Bacolod City was President Rodrigo Duterte’s response to complaints of illegal drugs proliferating in the city.
“We have to admit to the fact that high volume of illegal drugs were seized in Bacolod City,” Gasataya said.
More than P4 million worth of “shabu” (methamphetamine hydrochloride) were seized in various areas of Bacolod for the past couple of weeks, he said.
Gasataya added that the reassignment of Espenido in the city is a big help to address the illegal drugs problem in Bacolod.
Espenido, the controversial police official linked to the killings of alleged narco-politicians, is expected to report to the Police Regional Office-Western Visayas next week.
In 2016, Espenido was the chief of police in Albuera, Leyte when the town’s then mayor, Rolando Espinosa, who was tagged as drug suspect, was shot to death inside a jail in Baybay City.
The following year, Espenido was reassigned to Ozamiz City where then Mayor Reynaldo Parojinog, who was also linked to illegal drugs, was also killed in a police operation.
Councilor Al Victor Espino, chairperson of the City Council committee on police matter, said that the reassignment of Espenido to Bacolod City is a welcome addition to the Bacolod City Police Office (BCPO) in spite of the fact that the BCPO is a top-notcher in terms of drugs apprehension in Western Visayas.
“I believe that Major Espenido can teach us more in terms of apprehension to make BCPO more effective,” he said.
He added that based on BCPO’s accomplishments, it showed that the illegal drug in Bacolod is still rampant.
Councilor Dindo Ramos, chairperson of the City Council committee on laws, also said that Espenido is a welcome addition to the BCPO especially that the main thrust of the city government is to address the illegal drugs problem.
“Espenido’s record shows that he’s effective in enforcing the law and we are hopeful that this will be a warning to drug dealers that the city government is very serious to address the illegal drugs problem here,” he said.