Narco pols list an interagency report – PDEA

MANILA, Philippines — The list of mayors recently stripped of control over the police for their alleged links to the illegal drug trade did not come from the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) alone, an official said yesterday.

PDEA director Aaron Aquino said the list was based on a report of an interagency intelligence validation group composed of the PDEA, Philippine National Police Directorate for Intelligence, Intelligence Service of the Armed Forces of the Philippines and National Intelligence Coordinating Agency. 

Catalino Cuy, Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) officer-in-charge, also clarified his earlier statement that the National Police Commission obtained the list of mayors from PDEA.

Cuy said he only mentioned PDEA because it is in charge of the government’s campaign against illegal drugs.

Five Southern Tagalog mayors and 18 others across the country were on the list.

 Aquino said PDEA has been updating the list on a monthly basis as secretariat of the task force, which was created last January as directed by the National Security Council. 

He said the list is submitted to the Office of the President every time it is updated. Last September, he said the DILG visited the PDEA office to compare the list they got from President Duterte with the one prepared by the interagency task force.

Aquino said he supports the suspension of operational supervision and control over policemen of mayors with alleged drug links, noting that illegal drugs have “undeniably” contaminated the bureaucracy.  

He said PDEA agents have arrested 401 government officials since 2011. – Romina Cabrera, Ding Cervantes, Emmanuel Tupas

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