Puno enjoins local execs to lead war vs drugs
by Jemin B. Guillermo
Roxas City (10 February) -- The government has called on local chief executives to become frontliners in the war against illegal drugs.
Interior and Local Government Secretary Ronaldo Puno, in the agency's online news, has called on local chief executives to take in lead in the government's war against illegal drugs in their respective areas.
Puno said that the fight against illegal drugs should also be in close partnership with the Philippine National Police (PNP) and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA).
"We can only win the war against illegal drugs if our local government executives take on the role of frontliners in wiping out this menace," he said, adding that "we must all adopt a proactive stance to succeed in this fight."
Puno said that city and municipal mayors can call on the PNP in their respective communities to conduct periodic and unannounced on-site inspections of commercial establishments, particularly bars, resorts and nightclubs, suspected of being used as drug dens or places of sale and delivery of illegal drugs—in line with their mandate under the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act to perform such tasks.
He explained that this is part of the local chief executive's powers of operational supervision and control over the local police.
Punong barangays, on the other hand, should identify drug-affected house clusters, work places, streets, puroks and sitios where the delivery, sale or use of illegal drugs is being conducted and report this immediately to the PNP or PDEA, Puno noted.
In a memorandum circular issued to local chief executives, Puno said "mayors should also ensure that the Administrative Board stated under Section 52 of RA 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2007 is created, becomes functional, and faithfully discharges the mandated task to abate nuisances contemplated under the said provision of the law."
He disclosed that mayors should also exercise their powers to revoke the business permit of any establishment found by the Board to be the site of the deliveries, sale and use of illegal drugs and substances.
Mayors are also expected to "provide support, financial or otherwise, to the local PNP that is necessary in its sustained operations against illegal drugs; and ensure that the Punong Barangays under their general supervision perform their responsibilities as embodied in his Circular and other relevant DILG issuances and pertinent laws."
Puno said that punong barangays should likewise extend the necessary assistance and cooperation--from operations up to prosecution—to the PDEA and PNP authorities in their operations against illegal drugs. (PIA) [top]