MANILA—More than 74,000 drug suspects have been arrested so far by various law enforcement agencies (LEA) as part of the government’s continuing effort to wipe out illegal drugs and criminality.
In an update, law enforcement agencies conducted 58,751 anti-drug operations from July 1, 2016 to May 17, 2017 which resulted to the arrest of 74,650 suspects.
Lead agencies involved in the anti-illegal drugs operations are the Philippine National Police (PNP), Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and the Bureau of Customs (BoC).
Their consolidated report as of May 17 showed that 2,999 drug suspects died in police operations, while 41 died and 122 were wounded on the side of law enforcement agencies.
Meanwhile, the PNP-Internal Affairs Service said 158 police officers found positive of using illegal drugs were dismissed from the service while 168 other cases are still being investigated.
PNP Deputy Director General Ramon Apolinario acknowledged that the illegal drug menace is a major concern and that a more determined implementation is needed.
”As members of government, we make sure to provide accurate, not the rounding off, but exact and timely information to the members of the media and the populace. Even sometimes putting ourselves in the most inconvenient situations. So far, we believe that government communications have done a good job in keeping the public informed of the true situation as far as illegal drugs,” Apolinario said during the #RealNumbers forum last May 2, 2017.
Apolinario said the war on drugs launched by the government last year “has brought about remarkable result in different forms.”
“These numbers definitely bring us to a higher level of public awareness and concerns that cannot anymore be taken for granted. We accept that PNP and other law enforcement agencies have different methods in systems of reporting crime data,” he said adding that the forum provided the perfect opportunity to present accurate information as far as the anti-illegal drugs campaign is concerned.
He noted the police force remains focused in doing their job and remains the nation’s servants and protectors as part of their mandate.
Earlier, PNP Chief Ronald Dela Rosa assured the public that the PNP will continue the campaign against drugs, adding that they will utilize all available resources to finally eradicate crime and illegal drugs in the country.
The PNP chief said President Duterte vowed to fully support the police force in fulfilling their mandate which is to serve and protect the people from drugs, crime and other illegal activities.
Dela Rosa also urged the public to support and help the PNP’s anti-illegal drugs drive.