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PIA Press Release

Iloilo Gov activates PPOC

by T Villavert

Iloilo City (10 November) -- Governor Arthur Defensor expressed positive outlook that the newly activated Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC) will help address problems like insurgency, illegal drugs and criminality in Iloilo province.

Governor Defensor said that there is a need to reorganize the PPOC because Iloilo Province "up to now is still in search for the real and meaningful lasting peace".

"We are in search because there are quite a number of obstacles that has prevented us for a long time in achieving that obsession," Defensor said.

Citing illegal drugs as one of the problems affecting the community, Gov. Defensor said that the threat requires the dedicated efforts of all government officials and citizens in the proper enforcement of the laws to maintain peace and order in the province.

"We won't give up, we will work together and focus on many things and we will achieve progress in our search for peace and order," Defensor said.

For the update on drug situation in Western Visayas, Director Paul Ledesma of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, said that number one choice is shabu followed by marijuana and ecstasy, mimic ecstasy (BZP) and cocaine.

Western Visayas is considered a consuming region because the supply of dangerous drugs continue to be smuggled into the region through air, land and sea transportation from Manila, Negros, Cebu, Mindanao, Masbate and General Santos.

He said, the region has no reported marijuana plantation or no large cultivation site, and it does not have clandestine laboratory that manufactures illegal drugs.

There are about 4,050 drugs affected barangays in Western Visayas, and approximately 65,000 substance abusers with Iloilo City and Bacolod City topping the list, Ledesma said.

The PDEA chief also showed to the members of the Iloilo PPOC the areas considered as Illegal drug hot spots in Iloilo City, Iloilo Province and the other towns and cities in Western Visayas. (PIA6) [top]

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