Believe it or not, some of the drug supplies coming to Bohol come from Manila, specifically at the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) in Muntinlupa and are sent through parcel service.
Drug agent Maria Chona Egam of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Authority (PDEA) in Bohol bared this at the recent provincial Peace and Order Council meeting last week at the Governorâ€™s Mansion.
Many however would not think how the NBP, which is operated to provide persons under custody, the opportunities for reformation, decent environment and secure settings, could provide the reported drugs to supply the illegal drug trade.
The NBP is under three distinct and yet separate departments like the Department of Justice (DOJ) with its Bureau of Corrections or National Prisons, the Department of Social Welfare and Development and the Bureau of Youth and Child Welfare and the Department of Interior and Local Government and its Bureau of Jail Management and Penology.
Months ago, subsequent raids at the NBP showed the proliferation of illegal drugs, illegal equipment, appliances and entertainment hubs inside prison cells, boosting the claim that drugs may have been manufactured inside the jails.
Years back, the PDEA cracked a drug ring which also used similar strategy using legitimate couriers in their drug trade. But, when people think that style has been exposed and would not work anymore, the PDEA think it is still being used.
Under section 5 of the Dangerous Drugs Act, the penalty of imprisonment ranging from twelve (12) years and one day to twenty years and a fine ranging from One hundred thousand pesos (P100,000.00) to Five hundred thousand pesos (P500,000.00) shall be imposed upon any person, who, unless authorized by law, shall sell, trade, administer, dispense, deliver, give away to another, distribute, dispatch in transit or transport any controlled precursor and essential chemical, or shall act as a broker in such transactions.
The PPOC has yet to rule on what to do with these legitimate couriers and parcel services who may have wittingly or unwittingly delivered dangerous substances.
While authorities have not been remiss in the mission to apprehend drug pushers through buy-busts and raids, the problem lies with the bulk which has entered Bohol and is already distributed to users.
Although most of the bulk deliveries shipped to Bohol would come from Ozamis City in Mindanao, Egam also reported Cebu is also another significant source.
Supplies from Cebu are sneaked into the province through the Roll-On Roll-Off ports through the ports of Tagbilaran, Tubigon, Ubay, Jagna, Talibon, Loon and Getafe while some are brought in to the shorelines by fishing vessels, Egam said.
Methamphetamine hydrochloride (shabu) is still the drug of choice in Bohol, the most saleable and is usually present near schools, fishing communities and tourism destinations, PDEA said.
On a per gram basis, a packet of shabu can be sold for P2,000 to P4,000, according to PDEA, while a big packet (bulto) is sold at P10,000 to P15,000.
In Tagbilaran City, aside from shabu, nubain is also used. (rac/PIA-7/Bohol)Â Â