SURALLAH, South Cotabato: The well-publicized threat that persons engaged in illegal drugs in the country will be dealt with harshly under the incoming Duterte administration has had a chilling effect on prohibited drug pushers and users in a South Cotabato town.
So much so that 23 of those listed in the police office as possible illegal drug pushers and users have voluntarily showed up to the police and vowed to reform.
But Chief Inspector Joel Fuerte, Surallah town police chief, said the act of 23 suspected drug pushers was a result of an intensified police campaign aimed at eradicating illegal drug activities in Surallah.
Those who showed up were asked to sign the Philippine National Police (PNP) certificate of undertakings to prove they voluntarily showed up at the police office and declared their dependence on illegal drugs.
Even before the well-publicized statement of incoming President Duterte that he will offer a bounty to police officers if they killed persons engaged in illegal drugs, the Surallah PNP has been “cleansing” the town of illegal drug peddlers and users.
Earlier, the local police furnished all village chairpersons of with a list of suspected drug users and pushers, warning them to stop illegal activities or face the consequence of their actions.
“If based on police monitoring those who showed up and vowed to mend their ways have indeed reformed, they will be delisted from the PNP list,” Fuerte said.
Senior Supt. Franklin Alvero, South Cotabato police director, earlier urged all those engaged in the illegal drug trade and crime groups to surrender before the Duterte administration assumes office on June 30.
A mother in Koronadal City said she would rather see her son in jail than see him dead once the no-nonsense campaign against illegal drugs begins.
A self-confessed shabu (methamphetamine hydrochloride) user said the illegal drugs are now sold at a very low price. “We hear from suppliers about their closing out sale, bagsak presyo, discounted price, inventory sale of prohibited substance in South Cotabato because of Mayor Duterte’s pronouncements on TV,” he said on condition that he remained unidentified.