MANILA -- The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) on Tuesday welcomed the return of the Philippine National Police (PNP) to the government's anti-drug operations as ordered by President Rodrigo Roa Duterte.

“PDEA welcomes the decision of the President. It has been the desire of PDEA that PNP will return in the fight against illegal drugs," PDEA Director General Aaron N. Aquino said in a statement.

On Tuesday, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque announced in a press briefing that the President has signed a memorandum circular directing the PNP to provide active support to PDEA in the conduct of anti-drug operations.

PDEA, however, will remain as the lead agency in the government's anti-drug campaign.

The PDEA chief admitted the need for other law enforcement agencies to participate in the anti-drug campaign, saying that his agency is "undermanned, underequipped and inadequately funded."

From the time it was given the sole responsibility in the conduct of anti-drug operations, PDEA conducted a total of 2,161 anti-drug operations from October 11, 2017 to December 4, 2017 that resulted in the arrest of 750 drug personalities and seizure of PHP104.10 million worth of illegal drugs. (Christopher Lloyd Caliwan/PNA)



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