President Rodrigo Duterte has ordered the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency (NICA) and the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to be more actively involved in the revitalized anti-drug campaign led by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA).
Presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella said Duterte gave the directive during the closed-door meeting of the National Security Council’s executive committee in Malacañang on Monday night.
The President also enlisted the help of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) and the Philippine National Police (PNP) to ensure the success of the campaign against illegal drugs
“The President reiterated his resolve to address the drug problem within his term,” Abella said.
“Towards this end, he directed the NICA and NBI to be more actively involved in the PDEA-led anti-drug operations, together with the AFP and PNP,” he added.
The President earlier created, through an executive order, an inter-agency committee to spearhead the fight against illegal drugs.
Under Executive Order 15 signed on Monday, the PDEA will lead the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs or ICAD.
Duterte’s decision to revamp his administration’s drug war was prompted by the abduction and killing by some policemen of a South Korean businessman in Camp Crame, the PNP’s national headquarters.
The bloody campaign against illegal drugs had claimed at least 7,000 lives. More than 2,500 drug suspects were killed in legitimate police operations while the rest were slain by unidentified groups or men. CATHERINE S. VALENTE