P146.5 million marijuana destroyed in Kalinga

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TINGLAYAN, Kalinga – More than P146.5 million worth of fully grown marijuana plants and marijuana stalks were destroyed by combined police operatives and anti-narcotics operatives during a 3-day marijuana eradication operation in 9 plantation sites at Barangay Buscalan, here, Thursday.

            Police Brig. Gen. Israel Efraim Dickson, regional director of the Police Regional Office (PRO) in the Cordillera, said that the operating government forces were able to uproot some 717,900 pieces of fully grown marijuana plants and recovered some 25,000 grams of marijuana stalks in the 9 plantation sites having a total land area of 39,800 square meters wherein the projected market value of the destroyed contraband amounts to over P146.5 million.

            The police official claimed that the 3-day marijuana eradication operation stared last August 13 and commenced on August 15 wherein the operation troops were combined of combined police and military personnel from the different stations regionwide and anti-narcotics agents from the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA).

            Disckson revealed that most of the marijuana plants were burned on site while a fraction of the same were taken by the operating troops for evidentiary purposes.

            Ironically, no marijuana cultivator was arrested by the operating troops as they were allegedly able to flee from the plantation sites prior to the arrival of the government forces who conducted the marijuana eradication operation in the area.

            Based on the report from the PNP and the PDEA, the municipality of Tingalayan and its barangays remain to be the drug affected local governments in the region because of the proliferation of the so-called illegal hemp that thrives well in the hinterlands of the region.

            For the past several decades, the Cordillera remains to be the major producer of marijuana considering that the type of marijuana produced in the fatality is considered as high grade.

By Dexter A. See