Philippines

13 village officials in Davao under PDEA narco list

13 village officials in Davao under PDEA narco list
By Lilian Mellejor

DAVAO CITY (Philippines News Agency) — The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency’s office in Davao region said it has 13 village officials in its watch list of persons involved in illegal drugs.

PDEA 11 (Davao) Director Antonio Rivera disclosed this during the press briefing of the Armed Forces of the Philippines – Philippine National Police Press Corps, held at the Royal Mandaya Hotel on Friday.

Although he is not sure if the 13 officials are seeking re-election this May, Rivera said most of them are village councilmen. One of the barangay captains is in Davao City.

Another one earlier surrendered to authorities but he was put back in the list following information that he went back to illegal drug activities.

Rivera said PDEA will check if these officials have filed their Certificate of Candidacy with the Commission on Elections.

Asked if the list would be revealed, Rivera said he will wait for a directive from PDEA Director General Aaron Aquino.

On Thursday, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque confirmed that President Rodrigo R. Duterte had ordered PDEA to release the names of the village officials in the narco list.

The order was reportedly made three weeks before the May 14 Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections.

According to Aquino, the narco list includes 89 barangay chairmen and 122 barangay kagawads.

He disclosed that the list originally contained 216 names but five barangay captains were taken off the list as they will be subjected to further validation.

Rivera told reporters that PDEA-11’s list has been validated and bears a summary of information about the person.

Aside from the village officials, there are other high-value targets, including government workers, he said.

On Thursday, a revenue collection officer of Padada municipality, Davao del Sur was arrested in a joint buy-bust operation conducted by PDEA-Davao del Sur, the Regional Intelligence Unit and the police.

Callao was arrested after selling to a PDEA agent one sachet of suspected shabu for PHP1,000.

Meanwhile, an ex-police officer was apprehended in Purok Ubas corner Melon and Strawberry St., Niceville Subdivision, Barangay Cagangohan, Panabo City, Davao del Norte on Thursday night.

Carlito Salvador Wong, 59 years old, was arrested when authorities served him a search warrant. During the operation, the operatives confiscated three big packs and one small sachet of suspected shabu weighing more or less 25 grams with a street value of PHP 375,000, one pack Cannabis sativa L and assorted drug paraphernalia.

Rivera said Wong was also a high-value target, elusive and number one in Davao del Norte’s provincial target list. Wong’s last assignment as a police officer was at the Maritime Police, he said. (PNA)

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