MANILA, Philippines — Based on the memorandum order signed by the president on October 10, all law enforcement agencies like the Philippine National Police (PNP), National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), Bureau of Customs (BOC) and even the ad hoc task force will leave to the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) the conduct of all anti-illegal drugs operations in the country.
This means that only PDEA will handle the herculean task of executing the government’s anti-drug operations.
The PNP meanwhile, said it is ready to follow the orders of the chief executive.
PNP Spokesperson Police Chief Supt. Dionardo Carlos said that the police will now focus on the eradication of crimes and internal cleansing among their ranks.
Despite this, Carlos noted that they are still ready to provide assistance to PDEA when needed.
Meanwhile, PDEA admitted that the directive might have a negative implication on existing drug operations the agency is conducting with the PNP.
“Well because combined forces with the PNP on the conduct of illegal drugs would result in bigger accomplishments. The number of operations being conducted is twice as many, but of course, if we’re the only ones conducting it, it will decrease in terms of figures, the number of operations conducted,” said PDEA Gen. Aaron Aquino.
Aquino has said in an interview on the program Get It Straight with Daniel Razon, that PDEA lacks manpower and that they only have more than 1,000 agents.
He added that in a successful drug operation, 60% was the work of the PNP while the 40% was because of PDEA.
The PDEA chief also admitted that until now, the agency could still not stand alone on itself.
“So as of the moment DG, you still can’t perform your mandate that you should be the lead agency when it comes to the war on illegal drugs? You can’t take over it?” asked host, Daniel Razon.
“We admit we still can’t,” said Aquino.
“So you will just let the PNP now lead the young war against drugs. Is that it?” asked Razon.
“We will lead the war on illegal drugs but our support is needed by the PNP and all other law enforcement agencies. PDEA alone, we can’t to it,” said Aquino.
Although the task is difficult, PDEA assured that it will follow the directives of the president and promises to do all it can to fight against illegal drugs.
The agency is just hoping to receive additional fund allocation so they could hire more agents and new equipment in order for them to intensify their operations. — Mon Jocson | UNTV News & Rescue