By John Noel E. Herrera
Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor Jr. asked newly-installed Police Regional Office (PRO)-6 acting director Police Brigadier General Sidney Villaflor to sustain the “aggressive” campaign against illegal drugs in the province.
In a press conference on Thursday, June 8, 2023, Defensor said that Villaflor paid a courtesy visit to his office where they talked about sustaining the ongoing campaigns of the provincial government and PRO-6, including the drive versus illegal activities.
“Those are the things nga bal-an naman daan sang aton PNP… Ang aton campaign sa drugs, dapat hindi kita da mag-untat, hindi maghinay kag isa na sa mga ginsugilaninan naton,” the governor said.
Defensor added that there were still some barangays in Iloilo that are not “drug-cleared,” noting that some village officials were even involved in the said illegal activity.
“May mga barangay pa kita nga hindi pa drug-cleared, so we should chase the target sa aton campaign against illegal drugs,” he stressed.
A report from the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) Barangay Drug Clearing Program (BDCP) stated that some 90.25 percent of the 4,051 barangays in Western Visayas, including the 1,721 (98.55%) in Iloilo province, have been cleared of illegal drugs as of May 2023.
Data from the PNP earlier indicated that 430 barangay officials in the country are on the list of suspected illegal drug personalities, including 76 in Western Visayas, where four village chiefs and 11 barangay kagawads came from Iloilo province.
Defensor also noted that maintaining the peace initiative programs of the province, through the help of the PNP, is crucial to boost the economy and attract more investors in the province.
“We also talked about ang atong mga programa, especially sa peace initiative nga isa man naton ka agenda kay diri sa probinsya, related to our investment is our peace initiative. We will try to be aggressive through our localized peace engagement council,” he said.
The governor revealed that he had already directed the Provincial Peace and Order Council (PPOC) to convene the Localized Peace Engagement Council to talk about peace and order programs in Iloilo.
“We will come up with measures so that we can have an aggressive peace program sa Iloilo,” he said.
Meanwhile, Defensor said that the province has been supportive of the projects and campaign of PRO-6, citing the provincial government downloaded assistance for some infrastructure projects of the police force.
“We welcome our new director (Villaflor) and we talk about our ongoing projects kay nagabulig man kita sa PNP… Nagahatag kita assistance sa infrastructures sa Camp Delgado. The intended PNP headquarters in Passi City, may assitance man na kita da nga P11 million nga gin-download sa Passi City to sementohon ang dalan pakadto sa plano nga bag-o nga PNP headquarters,” he said.
Villaflor, a native of Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija became the PRO-6 acting director effective May 22, 2023 through Special Order No. NHQ-GO-DES-2023-2027, replacing Police Brigadier General Archival Macala.