PRO 7: Illegal drugs still a problem in CV

PRO 7: Illegal drugs still a problem in CV
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POLICE in Central Visayas will launch “aggressive and highly-analytical” operations against drug personalities in the region as illegal drugs remain a challenge here though 62 percent of barangays had been declared “drug-cleared” by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA).

“We will not be ashamed to tell you that we still have illegal drug problems. We need to work some more and we need the community to help police,” said Lt. Col. Gerard Pelare, spokesperson of the Police Regional Office (PRO) 7 Director Anthony Aberin, in Open Line News Forum.

In the first six months of 2024, the PRO 7 confiscated about P600 million worth of illegal drugs and apprehended around 3,000 drug personalities, said Pelare.

“We still face challenges in illegal drugs, but if you ask us if we are improving, yes we are because 62 percent of the barangays in Central Visayas are now declared as cleared by PDEA,” said Pelare in a mix of Cebuano and English.

Crime rates

Meanwhile, Pelare said crime incidences dropped by one percent in the first five months of 2024 based on PRO 7 records.

Crimes that reported a decrease during the period were murder, homicide, rape, physical injury, theft, robbery, carnapping, and motornapping, said Pelare.

Online scams and swindling online are also a challenge to the PRO 7 although the number remains “manageable and low,” according to Pelare.

To help prevent crimes, Pelare said police in the region are implementing strategies that involve the filing cases against suspects who engage in illegal gambling and drugs to stop them from committing further crimes. They also intensified police visibility.

Various police stations have also launched education and feeding programs for the youth.

“I think any police initiative that invests in children or in young people will eventually result to a progressive and safe community,” said Pelare.

“An example is the Junior Police. If the youth will be exposed to police officers and government officers instead of them exposed to drug pushers, they will become good citizens,” Pelare said.

Junior Police is a program that aims to instill leadership, accountability, and responsibility among student leaders in Lapu-Lapu City. / DPC

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