On December 12, 126 new agents of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) completed the Drug Enforcement Officers Basic Course (DEOBC).
The new agents belong to Maragtala Class 2017-10 of PDEA Academy in Camp Castaňeda, Silang, Cavite.
According to PDEA Director General Aaron Aquino who grace the Commencement Exercises as Guest of Honor and Speaker, 110 of 126 will be deployed to monitor the country’s 13 key seaports and 1,200 private seaports nationwide, while 16 will be assigned to PDEA’s Financial Investigation Unit to enhance the agency’s capability to follow drug money trail and investigate possible money laundering activities.
Aquino said the 110 agents will be involved in close scrutiny of cargoes entering the country and will also sit beside X-ray technicians of the Bureau of Customs (BOC) to help in the detection of smuggled illegal drugs.
The deployment of the agents is one of the provisions of the Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) to be entered into by PDEA and Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) and Philippine Ports Authority (PPA). The proposed MOA was discussed during the visit of Macario Almario III, MARINA Administrator, to PDEA Director General Aquino.
He said they agreed to deputize PDEA agents to inspect all maritime vessels in the country’s 1,200 private seaports.
“This is a big boost to our intensified anti-drug campaign, particularly in our seaports where bulk of illegal drugs are smuggled. In addition, they will be our new eyes and ears against drugs syndicates who take advantage of the country’s porous shoreline which serves as entry and exit points of illegal drugs,” Aquino said. with PNA