Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte reiterated his message to drug lords and drug pushers that they should not enter the city. He issued the call during the anniversary of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency held at the Davao City Police Office barracks. (Ace R. Morandante/davaotoday.com)

Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte the anniversary of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency held at the Davao City Police Office barracks in June last year. (Ace R. Morandante/davaotoday.com)

TAGUM CITY— Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte vowed to disband the “contaminated” Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) if he becomes president.

“I will dismantle PDEA. It’s already been contaminated,” Duterte said in a statement on Friday, March 18.

Duterte earlier said that there were agents from PDEA involved in the illegal drug trade. In some of his campaign sorties in several parts of the country, he made several statements against the drug enforcement agency, questioning its “integrity.”

In 2014, Duterte ordered the destruction of P500 million worth of cocaine in Davao City, suspecting that the cocaine would end up being resold in the streets.

“I will not allow it to leave Davao. When it reaches Manila it will be circulated again,” Duterte said.

Duterte, during a Laoag sortie in mid-February, said: “Duda ako dito sa PDEA,” referring to some PDEA personnel’s involvement in the proliferation of illegal drugs.

The local chief executive of Davao, meanwhile, has introduced former PDEA director general Dionisio Santiago.

“If you don’t vote for him, I will appoint him. But not to PDEA, it will have a different name. I have to disband PDEA,” Duterte said, wooing people to vote Santiago in the Senate.

Santiago claims that during his stint with PDEA, he had several personnel investigated for allegedly coddling drug pushers and even drug lords.

He said he was disappointed to learn that several personnel who were investigated  for alleged drug trade are still in active duty up to this time at the anti-drug enforcement agency.

“They were adopted by those who replaced me,” he said. “There is something wrong going on with PDEA. A lifestyle check should be done among PDEA personnel. The cleansing should be a continuing process.”

“We must closely follow the investigation on personnel who have cases all the way up to the Civil Service Commission,” he said. (davaotoday.com)

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