Baleros: The drug problem is ‘not as rampant’
By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office (NOPPO) director, Police Colonel Romeo Baleros, yesterday said the Philippine National Police is targeting the arrest of top drug dealers in the province this year. The NOPPO chief, together with top police officials from across the province, gathered for yesterday’s New Year’s Call at the Provincial Capitol Social Hall.
He said there are currently five drug groups operating in the province—namely, the Divinagracia, Bertucio, Burgos, Mangontawar, and Ramos groups—and, in 2019, authorities confiscated about P30 million worth of illegal drugs.
The NOPPO official said last year’s accomplishments will serve as their baseline for 2020.
“The arrests we made last year should be surpassed this year,” he vowed.
In addition, Baleros said smuggling illegal drugs into the province has also become difficult for drug suppliers and credited the “relentless campaign” against illegal drugs by police.
He pointed out, Negros has a lengthy coastline and there are commercial and private ports, along with certain coastal areas, that cannot be watched over but, pointed out, the illegal drugs supply in the province reduced by 60 percent compared to last year.
In response to Bacolod City being characterized as “shabulized,” Baleros said illegal drug activity in the province is not as rampant as before but acknowledged they have yet completely stop the entry of illegal drugs, calling it a “multi-billion business.”/DGB, WDJ