TWENTY-THREE barangays in Quezon City are already free of illegal drugs, Vice Mayor Joy Belmonte said on Wednesday.
“We can see from the data that there was an increase in the number of those who surrendered. From 21, we now have 23 drug-cleared barangays,” said Belmonte, who leads the city’s Anti-Drug Abuse Council.
In June 2017, Mayor Herbert Bautista announced 21 out of 142 barangays had been classified as drug-free.
“We are happy with this because it’s not easy to declare that a barangay is drug-free. It’s a very long process with lots of requirements, so we are happy that our barangays have the motivation and initiative to continue and maintain our campaign against illegal drugs,” the vice mayor added.
To be declared drug-free by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, a committee must validate the non-availability of the supply of illegal drugs in the barangay, the absence of drug transit, storage, and production operations, and the loss of users and pushers.
It is working closely with the local government against illegal drug activities in accordance with the Dangerous Drugs Board Regulation of 2017, or the “Strengthening the Implementation of the Barangay Drug-Clearing Program.”
“We’re going to improve the anti-drug program. It’s still at the top of our agenda and we’re still working very hard to make sure all the issues are addressed and the data is accurate,” said Belmonte, who is running for mayor in next year’s elections.