96 local execs to face anti-drug charges  – DILG

Marje Pelayo   •   November 12, 2018   •   2810

DILG officials

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) revealed on Monday (November 12) that a total of 96 local government officials are likely to face charges involvement in illegal drugs trade.

According to DILG Secretary Eduardo Año, the agency is determined to recommend to President Rodrigo Duterte the publication of his watch list of drug personalities especially since the midterm polls are about three months away.

The DILG together with the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) is continuously verifying the said list of so called narco-politcians.

In fact, Año said some of the personalities in the list can already be charged based on evidence acquired by the agency.

The Secretary confirmed it involves some active congressmen.

“Iba ibang level iyan, mayroong cuddling, merong nagto-tolerate, merong mismong involved,” Año said.

“Ang sabi ko nga, PDEA ang maglalabas niyan. Sa akin, we’ll recommend na ilabas natin,” he added.

Meanwhile, Senator Francis Escudero dared the agency to just release the list in the spirit of fairness.

“Kung talagang tiwala sila, kumpyansa sila na may basehan ang listahan na iyon, bakit di nila ilabas para hindi lahat ng local na opisyal, hindi lahat ng congressman ay pagdududahan na nasa listahan o baka nasa listahan. Oportunidad na rin iyon sa sinuman na mapapangalagaan na linisin ang pangalan niya at kasuhan ang sinumang PDEA o DILG na maglalagay ng pangalan doon na walang basehan,” Escudero argued.

The Senator said it is up to the people to decide if an election aspirant is credible enough to be voted for a government position. – Marje Pelayo (with reports from Nel Maribojoc)

DILG wants Manila LGU to explain poor performance on gov’t war on drugs

Marje Pelayo   •   December 17, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) is demanding an explanation from the local government of Manila why it failed the government’s illegal drugs campaign.

Based on the 2018 Anti-Drug Abuse Council (ADAC) Performance Audit, the city of Manila received 48% failure functionality rating among the cities across Metro Manila.

According to DILG Undersecretary Rico Judge Echiverri, drug functionality of the anti-drug abuse council in the city has been low from 2016 to 2018.

Echiverri clarified, however, that it is not incumbent Mayor Isko Domagoso who should solely shoulder the blame but the LGU itself and the former officials, particularly, former Mayor Joseph Estrada.

“But again, we have to give the show cause order. Remember we are filing cases not on the person but on the institution, which is the City of Manila,” Echiverri explained.

“So kahit hindi si Mayor Isko ang (So even if it’s not Mayor Isko who is) accountable, he has to answer still to the poor performance of Manila City,” he added.

Meanwhile, the DILG is pushing for a bill that would penalize local officials who do not act on the government’s campaign against illegal drugs.

Under the ADAC bill, a local official may be put in jail and may be stripped of his chance for public service.

“Fine or suspension wala iyan. Hindi nila iniinda, pero ilagay mo as one of the provisions perpetual to run, tingnan mo kung di matakot ang mga yan, (Fine or suspension is something they will just ignore. But put it as one of the perpetual provisions to run, let’s see if they would dare),” Echiverri noted.

The bill is expected to progress at the Lower House through presidential son Congressman Paulo Duterte while Senator Ronald Dela Rosa is expected to propel on the approval of the bill at the Upper House. – MNP (with details from Dante Amento)

PDEA, PNP okay with VP Robredo’s dismissal from ICAD

Marje Pelayo   •   November 25, 2019

(L-R) PDEA chief Aaron Aquino, Vice President Leni Robredo and Philippine National Police officer-in-charge Police Lieutenant General Archie Francisco Gamboa

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) said it respects President Rodrigo Duterte’s decision to fire Vice President Leni Robredo as co-chairperson of the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD).

“PDEA respects and believes in the wisdom of the President,” PDEA chief Aaron Aquino, also the ICAD chairperson, said in a statement Sunday (November 24).

“Whatever happens, PDEA will continue to carry out its mandate to rid the country of illegal drugs with utmost sincerity and integrity,” he assured.

Philippine National Police (PNP), likewise, said it supports the President’s decision and assures that the campaign against high profile drug personalities will continue with utmost respect for human rights.

“The President has spoken,” PNP spokesperson Brig. Gen. Bernard Banac said.

“The PNP respects the decision of the President terminating the services of Vice President Leni Robredo as ICAD co-chair,” he added.

President Duterte fired Robredo as ICAD co-chair barely three weeks after he appointed her to the position.

In two weeks, the vice president has met with members of the private sector, representatives of various government agencies, religious groups and with officials of the United Nations (UN) to consult on how the government would treat the illegal drugs problems in the country.

But Malacañang noted several ‘missteps’ in Robredo’s actions such as her meeting with UN and her request to have access on classified information or the list of high value drug targets.

Earlier in Robredo’s appointment to ICAD, Duterte said he would fire her if confidential information leaked especially to foreign authorities. MNP (with details from Harlene Delgado)

DILG to ask LGUs to lift entry ban on pork products from Luzon

Marje Pelayo   •   October 15, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) is set to issue a memorandum circular to encourage local government units (LGUs) to lift their respective bans on entry of pork products coming from Luzon.

The LGUs imposed their own measures to prohibit the entry of pork products in their area in protection against the further spread of African Swine Fever (ASF).

According to DILG Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya, the DA requested them to allow meat processors to transport their products provided that their products are properly documented, properly processed, and approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

The Philippine Association of Meat Processors Incorporated (PAMPI) argued that so far, 56 provinces have existing import ban on pork and pork items from the Luzon region.

The group added that the meat processing industry would suffer P55-B loss in profit every year should the local governments not heed lifting the import ban.

PAMPI assured that its products are safe for public consumption, therefore, they are confident that they will not cause the spread of the ASF virus. – MNP (with details from Rey Pelayo)

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