DILG Central News
Robredo warns of Sanctions vs Barangay Officials for Non-Cooperation in Gov't's Anti-Drug CampaignFebruary 2, 2011
Interior andLocal Government SecretaryJesse Robredo yesterday warned his office would impose sanctions against barangay officials who would refuse to act as witnesses in the government’s anti-drug campaign, particularly in the implementation of search orarrest warrantsagainst known drug pushers and drug dens in their areas.
The DILG chief issued the warning in the wake of reports coming from thePhilippine Drug Enforcement Agency(PDEA) that some village officials in Metro Manila refuse to act as witness in their anti-drug drive.
Robredo cited Section 60 of theLocal Government Codeof 1991 that states that theDILG Secretarycan discipline, suspend or remove from office anylocal government official, including barangay officials, fordereliction of duty.
During a consultative meeting with the local peace and order council ofQuezon Cityled by Mayor Herbert Bautista the other day, Director Wilkins Villanueva told the DILG chief of their predicament with barangay captains in their anti-drug campaign.
“It is the duty of barangay officials to act as witnesses in the implementation of all oursearch warrants, especially in known drug dens and “tianggehans”. But some of them refuse to go with us, afraid of the people who are subject of the warrants. In other occasions, the subjects of the warrant are their relatives,” Villanueva said.
In response, the DILG chief said one of the duties and functions of the barangay officials was to “enforce all laws and ordinances which are applicable within their areas and perform duties and functions that are prescribed by law” for the maintenance of peace and order.
Robredo assured Villanueva that the DILG would issue a corresponding memorandum to all barangay officials next week to remind them that it is part of their obligation to help and assistgovernment law enforcement authorities perform their functions and duties.
The DILG chief said it is the priority ofPresident Benigno Aquino IIIto address the growing illegal drug problem in the country which has affected many Filipinos, particularly from the youth sector.
Three weeks ago, Robredo said, the DILG sent a team to the PDEA office to discuss improved coordination between the DILG, the PDEA and localchief executivesin the implementation of the government’s anti-drug campaign. ###