The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) in Bohol said that some individuals who are listed in their drug watch list won government seats in the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) and barangay polls last month.
“Naay mga napili, naay wa mi dagan, naay na re-elected ug naa puy mga bag-ong [kandidato] migawas na dati sa atong radar na mi-dagan ‘nya mi daog,” said PDEA agent Nicholas Gomez.
According to Gomez, there have also been barangay officials in Bohol involved illegal drug activities even before the May elections, contrary to the list of drug-linked village chiefs and councilors released by the PDEA;s head office in late April.
The list included 207 barangay officials but none were from Bohol.
“Kadtong gipagawas gikan to sa inter-agency task force ug dili to sa PDEA, sa tinood lang nga kung kame dinhi sa PDEA Bohol ang panut-on, naa g‘yud tay mapili nga mga barangay officials,” said Gomez.
The local law enforcement official explained that the list released by the PDEA was compiled and approved by an inter-agency intelligence task force which also includes the police and military.
“Kadtong maong list, dili lang to gikan sa PDEA, naa ta’y gitawag na inter-agency intelligence task force nga naglangkob sa Intelligence Directorate sa PNP, PDEA, Intelligence Service sa Armed Forces of the Philippines, National Intelligence Coordinating Agency,” he said.
Gomez noted that monitoring operations against officials linked to illegal drug activities are ongoing.
On April 30, the PDEA released its so-called narco-list of barangay officials.
The list did not include any official from Bohol, and Boholanos were incredulous.
“Maayo pagkalaba sa listahan… kadto lang nadakpan sa Calape di na lang to kwentahon,” said netizen Rekl Amador through a comment on the inter-agency arco-list which was posted by the Chronicle on Facebook.
The commenter was apparently pertaining to Euleterio Luega, a barangay councilor of Calape who was arrested for drugs right before he was about to file his certificate of candidacy in April.
In the same thread, former Talibon vice mayor Epifanio Quimson said that he hopes that barangay officials linked to drugs should use their non-inclusion in the list as a chance to end their involvement in narcotics trade.
“Pasalamat lang pod sila nga wala maapil sa listahan sa PDEA ug hinaot unta nga moundang na sila aron manindot ang kaugmaon natong tanan,” he said. (A. Doydora)