After President Rodrigo R. Duterte removed the war on drugs campaign from the Philippine National Police , the Police Regional Office 11is still willing to extend its assistance to the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency. This was bared by PRO 11 spokesperson Chief Insp. Andrea G. Dela Cerna in a telephone interview.
“If they want us to be there and if they want us to help we will definitely help them. As what the PNP Chief (Director Gen. Ronald Dela Rosa) said the PNP is very willing to help PDEA in terms of operation,” she said. Dela Cerna said they are also willing to share intelligence information with PDEA for them to help their operation. She said that with power given to PDEA by the president, she believed that the said agency can still do its mandate. Dela Cerna however, clarify that the power being removed to the PNP are the operations planning and the conduct of buy-bust operation. She explained that under Rule 113 of the Revised Penal Code which pertains to warrantless arrest that has three elements such as about to commit, act of committing and have just been committed a crime, they can still arrest a drug suspects.
“For example nagpa-patrol po ang ating isang pulis kasama po ang kanyan ka-buddy, ay naaktohan po niya na gumagamit ng pinagbabawal na gamot ang isang maari po siyang hulihiin (For example our police officers conducted a patrol and they caught in the act a person using an illegal drugs, the police can arrest them),” she said.
On the other hand, the PDEA in the region admitted that it cannot implement the war on drugs campaign alone due to lack of manpower.
PDEA 11 legal counsel lawyer Ben Joseph Tesiorna said the agency will still need the help of the PNP especially on big operations.