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Cebu execs cry foul over drug hotspot tag

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Cebu Gov. Hilario Davide III and City Mayor Tomas Osmeña strongly protested the statements made by Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Director General Oscar Albayalde that the province is an illegal drugs hotspot.

Davide insisted that it was a “sweeping” statement by Albayalde, urging him to identify where particularly in Cebu drug use is rampant.

The governor said that there are already more than 100 drug-free barangays in the province and this can be one of the basis that the anti-illegal drugs campaign is effective.

Osmeña, for his part, asked: “Why single out Cebu?”
In his first visit to Cebu as PNP chief the other day, Albayalde said the province is an illegal drug hotspot because of the millions of pesos worth of seizures made by the PNP and the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA).

The mayor disputed Albayalde’s claim, pointing out that every place in the country is a “drug hotspot” and not only Cebu.

“If he’s singling out Cebu, he’s wrong. Don’t single out Cebu because our police have conducted more buy bust operations than the rest of the country. I get reports every single day,” Osmeña said.

The city mayor also claimed that they had neutralized the alleged two top drug lords in Cebu — Jeffrey “Jaguar” Diaz and Rowen “Yawa” Secretaria — just a few days after he won in the 2016 elections.

Secretaria and Diaz were killed in police operations in Bohol in May 2016 and in Las Piñas in June 2016, respectively.

Senior Supt. Joel Doria, the Cebu City Police Office director, meanwhile, opined that before he assumed his position, Cebu City was already tagged as one of the illegal drug hotspots in the country.

“That’s why we intensified our operations. There’s no let up here,” Doria said.
The police official said that from June 11 to 17, 2018, operatives of the CCPO seized 1,567.20 grams of crystal meth or shabu worth P18.4 million.

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