CITY OF SAN FERNANDO--At least 9,258 drug suspects, users and peddlers voluntarily surrendered in the whole province of Pampanga after police authorities conducted 2,094 house visit operations since President Rodrigo Duterte assumed office.
This was revealed yesterday by Police Senior Superintendent Rodolfo Recomono, Jr., police provincial director during the first Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC) meeting for this year at the Capitol.
Recomono also disclosed that of the total number, 8,736 are confirmed drug users while 522 are drug pushers.
With this, Governor Lilia "Nanay" Pineda ordered an all-out war against the drug menace as she also warned local government officials who will be found using and involved in illegal drugs will be dealt with accordingly and will be administratively and criminally charged.
She also favored the approval of the mandatory drug testing among government officials.
Governor Pineda, together with Vice-Governor Dennis "Delta" Pineda also reiterated their call to unite in eliminating illegal drugs in the province and support the Duterte administration in its massive anti-drug campaign.
"Let's start from the provincial capitol, barangay officials, employees from the municipalities and so on--there should be mandatory drug testing. We are not exempted from this just because we were elected as officials, change should start within ourselves," Governor Pineda said.
The governor also enjoined local officials from the different municipalities to coordinate with the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), Philippine National Police (PNP), Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), Barangay Anti-Drug Abuse Council (BADAC) in various activities to strengthen and broaden the campaign against illegal drugs.
"What we really need is coordination. Look for all the (drug) pushers in your community now. Locate if there are any drug laboratories operating now. So you know you were able to accomplish your task and you won't be subjected to neglect of duty. Let's all work together in this all out war against drugs," the governor stressed.
Mayor Emmanuel "Bon" Alejandrino of Arayat pledged his full support to the provincial government and vowed that all the incidents of killings and killers of suspected drug users and drug pusher "will be put to rest" by the end of this month.
Mayor Marino "Boking" Morales of Mabalacat with 863 surrenderees, vowed to allocate P5-million for the city's campaign against illegal drugs.
The mayor also reiterated his call for collective efforts among stakeholders in achieving the goal of completely eradicating the illegal drugs.
The provincial peace and order forum was also attended by Board Member Rosve Henson, DILG secretary Provincial Director Myrvi Fabia, Commanding Officer of the 703rd Infantry Brigade of the Armed Forces of the Philippines Col. Felimon Santos, Provincial Prosecutor of the Department of Justice Fiscal Lamberto Gonzales Jr., Dr. Leonita Gorgolon, assistant secretary for Visayas of the Department of Health, mayors from the different municipalities of Pampanga, department heads, regional directors, and police officers. Ma. Reina Len G. Luna/Pampanga PIO