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BONTOC, Mountain Province – Five barangays of this capital town have been declared drug-free by the Regional Oversight Committee on Barangay Drug Clearing Program.
The drug-free barangays are Tocucan, Gonogon, Guina-ang, Maligcong, and Bayyo.
The oversight committee, which is chaired by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), is composed of representatives of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), the Philippine National Police (PNP), Department of Health (DOH) and local government units.
Mayor Franklin Odsey, turned over the Certificate of Drug Free Barangay to Tocucan during the joint meeting of the Municipal Advisory Council (MAC) and Municipal Anti-Drug Abuse Council (MADAC) on July 14, 2021, at the Mayor’s Conference Hall of the Bontoc Municipal Capitol. Barangay officials from the other four drug-free barangays are not present to receive their respective Certificates of Drug- Free Barangay.
Odsey commended the barangay officials and residents of the five newly declared drug-cleared barangays for their individual and collective efforts in curbing the proliferation of illegal drugs in their areas of jurisdiction.
He added that Bontoc has been aggressively implementing the government’s anti-drug campaign since it was launched at the start of President Rodrigo Duterte’s term in 2016.
The declaration of a barangay as drug-free is pursuant to the parameters set forth by the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB) as provided in Section 8, DDB Board Regulation No. 3 Series of 2017, otherwise known as “Strengthening the Implementation of the Barangay Drug-Clearing Program”.
It is stipulated in DDB Board Regulation No. 3 Series of 2017 that before
declaring a barangay is free from illegal drug activities, the committee must convene and validate the non-availability of drug supply in the area; absence of drug den, pusher and / or user; absence of clandestine drug laboratory; active involvement of barangay officials in anti-drug activities; existence of drug awareness, preventive education and information; and existence of voluntary and compulsory drug treatment and rehabilitation processing desk.
Part of the MAC and MADAC joint-meeting is the finalization of the Bontoc Emergency Response to Addiction (BonTERA) Batch 3. This is the third phase of the Community Based Program of the capital town through its MADAC offering intervention to drug personalities/ drug surrenderers in the municipality.
Other issues and concerns that were addressed during the meeting are the continuous monitoring and supervision to the drug surrenderers, provision of appropriate training and livelihood projects to the drug surrenderers, purchase of body-worn-cameras and breath analyzer, and conduct of outreach program to identified barangays in Bontoc. By Alpine L. Killa