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PDEA beefs up drug-clearing ops in Central Luzon

The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) has beefed up its drug-clearing operations in the remaining drug-affected barangays of Central Luzon.

According to PDEA Regional Director Bryan Babang, the presence of illegal drugs remains a problem in the region exacerbated by the existence of drug dens, entry of illegal drugs in ports, and discovery of illegal drugs in parcels.

“Our implementation of drug clearing operations is continuous for us to clear these barangays that are still affected with illegal drugs,” he said in a Philippine Information Agency report.

“We are also doing continuous anti-illegal drug operations together with the Philippine National Police, Armed Forces of the Philippines, and other law enforcement units,” Babang said.

Data from the agency disclosed that 701 out of the total 3,102 barangays in Central Luzon remain drug-affected, as of September 12, the report said.

From the figure, 306 barangays are located in Bulacan, 167 barangays in Nueva Ecija, 109 barangays in Pampanga, 56 barangays in Tarlac, 28 barangays in Angeles City, 26 barangays in Zambales, and nine barangays in Olongapo City.

The provinces of Aurora and Bataan have already satisfied the requirements to be declared as drug-cleared provinces.

With this, Babang emphasized that they beefed up the implementation of the barangay drug-clearing program to counter the smuggling, production, cultivation, and distribution of illegal drugs.

“We are seeing the good results of our barangay drug-clearing operations because the number of drug-affected barangays lowered… Basically, we are able to address the number of our listed drug personalities,” he said.