Tuesday, January 24, 2017

RPOC-Bicol convenes first regular meeting
By Connie B. Destura

LEGAZPI CITY, Jan. 23 (PNA) —- As newly appointed chairman of the Regional Peace and Order Council (RPOC), Legazpi City Mayor Noel E. Rosal convened the first regular meeting of RPOC Monday as it tackled plans for peace and order in the region, particularly the war against drugs, criminality and insurgency.

RPOC convened its first joint meeting with the Regional Management and Coordinating Committee so it could address the key issues on peace and order, said Eloisa Pastor, director of the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) in Bicol, who headed the secretariat.

She acknowledged the participants and declared the quorum of the members during the meeting that was held Monday afternoon at Venezia Convention Hall, Renaissance Gardens in this city.

Pastor said the agenda included updates on security in the region and implementation of Republic Act 9165 or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.

Rosal echoed what President Rodrigo Duterte said during his recent meeting with local government officials in Malacanang--from the mayors to the governors--that he is seeking their support in the fight against “the serious drug problem” in the country.

“He (the President) asked all the governors and mayors to join the local police in this (illegal drug) campaign because this is what it takes now if we want to attain peace and order in our country,” said Rosal.

Chief Supt. Ramon Melvin Buenafe, director of the Police Regional Office in Bicol, gave an update on the accomplishments of Project Double-Barrel, the Philippine National Police’s (PNP) anti-illegal drug campaign and how majority of the drug-affected barangays in the region have been “cleared” of the problem of proliferation of illegal drugs.

He also reported on the PNP’s campaign against illegal fishing, gambling, mining and logging.

Meanwhile, the Philippine Drug and Enforcement Agency updated the RPOC members on the implementation of RA 9165.

Other member agencies of the RPOC such as the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Department of Public Works and Highways, Department of Agriculture and DILG gave updates on projects that would benefit various villages in the region.

Early this month, the President appointed Rosal as RPOC chairman in Bicol, to become the first mayor to hold the post after it was previously headed by governors in the region. (PNA) LAP/GVR/CBD/SGP