Ordinance sought vs 'drug activities' in hotels, lodging houses

THE police chief of Dumaguete City asked the City Council to legislate an ordinance that requires hotels, lodging houses, and similar establishments to monitor and report unusual and dubious activities, particularly concerning illegal drugs.

Superintendent Jonathan Pineda, Dumaguete police chief, is still awaiting the City Council's reply.

Pineda said Tuesday, April 10, that he sent a letter about three weeks ago to the City Council, suggesting that an ordinance be made to monitor hotels and similar establishments for possible illegal drug activities by their guests, based on the Dangerous Drugs Board Resolution 3.

“Requirement gyud na sya sa drug-clearing operation (that is a requirement (ordinance) in the drug clearing operation),” Pineda said.

On April 9, two suspected drug personalities were arrested while several others, including minors, managed to escape as police personnel swooped down a hotel/lodging house in Dumaguete City after they were reportedly selling/using drugs in that establishment.

The suspects had rented out rooms in the hotel/lodging house and one of them was reported to have been causing some trouble, prompting the co-owner/manager of the establishment to call for police assistance.

Responding police found suspected shabu and drug paraphernalia in some of the rooms rented by the suspects.

Pineda said this is now the new trend where those engaged in the illegal drugs trade would transact business inside hotels and other lodging establishments.

The police chief hopes that if an ordinance is passed, these establishments would be required to monitor and report unusual and dubious activities to law enforcers.

In the event that an illegal drug transaction transpires in an establishment, and the latter is found to be uncooperative, it could be subject for closure, he said.

“Ang mahirap lang dyan ay ang cooperation ng mga establishment (what is difficult is to get the cooperation of the establishments),” said the police chief.

Pineda said the establishments might not like the idea as it would affect their businesses, especially on the economic side, but he explained that while the establishments would be concerned with the economic losses, they should also understand that their businesses are at risk as the suspects could cause trouble, like setting a hotel on fire as drug users use fire to consume shabu. (PNA)