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PDEA, BUCOR fortify partnership to stop illegal drug trafficking in jails

  • Written by Alfred Dalizon
  • Published in Nation
  • Read: 145

PHILIPPINE Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) chair, Director General Aaron N. Aquino, and Bureau of
Corrections (BUCOR) Officer-in-Charge, retired Gen. Valfrie G. Tabian, yesterday signed an agreement
aimed at further strengthening the two agencies, effort to arrest the presence of illegal drug
trafficking and abuse inside the country’s prison facilities and penal farms.

Specifically being targeted by the PDEA and the BUCOR are illegal drug activities taking place
inside the New Bilibid Prisons (NBP) in Muntinlupa City where convicted drug lords have gained
notoriety for controlling all illicit activities specifically the entry of drugs, booze, weapons and
other contrabands.
    
The signing of the memorandum of agreement between the two officials came in the wake of
intelligence reports that convicted drug lords, many of them investigated by Congress last year have
already resumed their illicit activities and once again have turned the national penitentiary into the
‘center’ of all big-time drug trafficking activities in the country.
    
The agreement between the PDEA and the BUCOR particularly is aimed at continuing the
cooperation between the two agencies and further enhancing an ‘organized and systematic
implementation’ of Republic Act 9165 or The Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002 inside the
country’s correctional institutions.
    
One of the highlights of the MOA signing was the inauguration and blessing of the PDEA Liaison
and Coordinating Office inside the NBP.
    
“The MOA is an extension of the previous agreement between the two agencies on March 25, 2015,
except for the inclusion of additional provisions prescribing PDEA to have its own office inside the
BUCOR’s jurisdiction to effectively address the trafficking and other illegal activities relative to
dangerous drugs,” Aquino said.
    
Aquino added that BUCOR personnel are also expected to lend assistance in the day-to-day
operations of PDEA office inside the NBP.
    
The PDEA chief said that despite rigorous security measures in place, there is still a
prevalence of illegal drug trade happening in the NBP. “That is why, PDEA deemed it necessary to
establish its own liaison and coordinating office based inside NBP premises to address rapidly the
immediate concern of possible entry of drug contraband,” Aquino said.
    
The MOA ensures intelligence-sharing and joint investigation efforts in the conduct of anti-
drug operations within the jail premises under the jurisdiction of the BUCOR.
    
“Under the said agreement, PDEA is also authorized to conduct greyhound operations inside
BUCOR correctional facilities pursuant to the standard operating procedures,” the PDEA chief
explained.