By Jennifer Catan-Tilos
NEGROS ORIENTAL (PIA) – A total of 3,331 drug pushers and users as of July 8 have voluntarily surrendered to police authorities in different municipalities and cities in the province.
According Police Senior Supt. Harris Fama of Negros Oriental Provincial Police Office (NORPPO), the campaign is part of intensified government crackdown against illegal drug problem in the country dubbed Project TokHang (Toktok-Hangyo).
TokHang is part of Oplan Double Barrel aligned with the objective of President Rodrigo Duterte on anti-drug campaign aimed at drug pushers, users, and protectors of illegal drugs to curb and stop their illicit activities, said Col. Fama.
“However, the first approach is to have the list and validation of the suspects and reach out to them by communicating and explain for them to voluntarily surrender,” Fama explained.
Under TokHang (knock and talk or negotiate), law enforcers also convince drug personalities to never be involved again in the illegal drug trade.
Fama said the next line of attack is the police operation where a search warrant will be served and a buy-bust operation will be done.
However, the police director issued a warning against vigilante groups claiming that they help law enforcers on the anti-illegal drugs operation.
“We will not allow the vigilantes groups to have their own operation, the possibility that they may just shoot the pusher, the public should be alarmed on this and report to the authorities for we have to arrest them,” warned Fama.
“This already happening in one of the cities here, we arrested four persons in the check point bringing weapons and their mission to shoot the drug pushers and and I am very confident that vigilante group is existing,” said Fama.
Of over 3,000 drug pushers and users voluntarily surrendered in the province, these include the following cities and municipalities: Canlaon City, 22; Vallehermoso, 75; Guihulngan City, 576; La Libertad, 57; Jimalalud, 70; Tayasan, 96; Ayungon, 64; Bindoy, 39; Manjuyod, 26; Mabinay, 70; Bais City, 171; Tanjay City, 376; Pamplona, 20; Amlan, 203; San Jose, 237; Sibulan, 576; Dumaguete City, 56; Valencia, 23; Bacong, 12; Dauin, 154; Zamboanguita, 64; Siaton, 66; Sta. Catalina, 73; Bayawan City, 140; and Basay, 58. (rmn/jct/PIA7-NegrosOriental/This article was originally published at PIA Website on July 10, 2016)