LAOAG CITY – The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) has lauded local authorities representing at least seven towns and one city of Ilocos Norte for sustaining their drug-cleared status.
During a joint meeting of the Provincial Peace and Order Council and Provincial Anti-Drug Abuse Council held at the Laoag City Centennial Arena on Monday, Agent Darnel L. Bacate, PDEA Ilocos Norte provincial officer, said the towns of Bacarra, Burgos, Pagudpud, Pasuquin, Piddig, Solsona, Vintar and the City of Laoag are now declared free from illegal drug activities.
Guided by the Dangerous Drugs Board Regulation No. 3 series of 2017, a drug-free municipality ensures the following requirements: non-availability of drug supply, absence of drug den, pusher, user and absence of clandestine drug laboratory including the active involvement of Barangay officials in anti-drug activities such as drug awareness, preventive education and information, and voluntary and compulsory drug treatment and rehabilitation processing desk.
“For a municipality or city to be declared as drug-cleared, a revalidation of requirements must be submitted to maintain their status,” Bacate clarified during the presentation.
Of the total of 525 drug-affected barangays in Ilocos Norte, the PDEA reported 340 barangays are already drug cleared while the remaining 185 barangays are currently under validation.
Meanwhile, the PDEA also reported that at least three municipalities in the province now have a functional house for drug reformists or the so-called Bahay Silangan. These are located in the towns of Dingras, Piddig, and Pagudpud.
To be declared as a drug-cleared municipality or city by the PDEA, the agency is now requiring the establishment of a Bahay Silangan to facilitate the reformation of drug offenders. (PNA)