• 52 Bataan villages cleared of drugs

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    BALANGA CITY, Bataan: The police provincial office on Wednesday announced the clearing of 52 out of 209 drug-affected villages in just one month as it opened its third Bahay Pag-asa drug reformation center.

    The Bataan police director, Senior Supt. Benjamin Silo, Jr., said of the total 237 villages in 11 towns and one city here, 209 were listed drug- affected as of June 30, 2016.

    “With 52 cleared, remaining are 157 villages still with the illegal drug problem. We are targeting the clearing of another 50 villages this August,” Silo added.

    He said he was hopeful that with the minimum three-month target of President Rodrigo Duterte to clear the country of drugs, they can rid 70 to 80 percent of the remaining villages here of the prohibited substances.

    Silo added that the Bahay Pag-asa Reformation Center located at the Philippine Army camp in Balanga is the third facility in the province that caters to drug quitters.

    The other two centers are located inside the police provincial office in Camp Tolentino, also in Balanga and in Limay town.

    The new center can accommodate 45-50 drug surrenderers who will undergo reformation for one month and skills training to be given by the Technical Skills and Development Authority for livelihood opportunities.

    As of July 31, Silo said 3,250 drug offenders had surrendered, while 142 pushers and drug users were arrested and 15 pushers killed in what he called legitimate police operations.

    He added that they want to provide rehabilitation services to surrenderers to ensure that they would be totally free from the drug menace with the support of their families.

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