PDEA-Zamboanga focuses on prevention, target-listed suspects

By Teofilo Garcia, Jr.

May 24, 2023, 6:21 pm

ZAMBOANGA CITY – The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) 9 (Zamboanga Peninsula) is focusing its campaign on drug abuse prevention and awareness in schools, workplaces, and barangays across the region.

Darmalyn Jumlail, PDEA-9 information officer, said Wednesday the move is in line with the pronouncement of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. that his administration would focus on drug abuse prevention and education, as well as the improvement of rehabilitation centers in the country.

Jumlail said they are currently conducting anti-drug advocacy in schools and workplaces to instill public awareness of the disastrous effects of using illegal drugs.

“We have to focus on prevention, specifically in educating the youth on the ill effects of illegal drugs,” Jumlail said during the Philippine Information Agency’s “Kapihan na Zamboanga” press briefing at a mall here.

Local anti-drug abuse councils have been tapped to help boost the conduct of advocacy campaigns against illegal drugs as they lack the needed manpower, she said.

On the other hand, Jumlail said another focus of PDEA-9 is on the conduct of anti-drug operations and the arrest of target-listed drug suspects in the region, in coordination with other law enforcement agencies.

Another prevention measure, she said, is the regular conduct of luggage inspections by K9 units in airport, bus, and wharf passenger terminals.

Since January this year, PDEA-9 has conducted 280 K9 inspections.

In addition, she said, the implementation of the drug-clearing program in barangays in the region remains in full effect.

PDEA-9 data indicated that 1,334 of the 1,904 barangays in the region have been declared drug-cleared, leaving 455 still drug-affected.

The agency also certified 115 villages as “unaffected” by illegal drug use in the region. (PNA)