Shabu prices in Metro Manila peaked at P6,800 per gram at the height of the government’s war against illegal drugs, but prices have gone down as the P6.8-shabu shipment that made its way to a warehouse in Cavite is now circulating on the streets.
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PDEA: Shabu floods Metro Manila streets; prices drop
Romina Cabrera (The Philippine Star) - October 10, 2018 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — While prices of basic commodities have been rising, the cost of methamphetamine hydrochloride or shabu has dropped by more than a third as a ton of the drug that slipped into the country through magnetic lifters has “flooded” the streets of Metro Manila, according to the head of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA).

PDEA director general Aaron Aquino, in an interview with “The Chiefs” on Cignal TV’s OneNews, said shabu prices are now at their lowest at P1,600 to P2,000 per gram in the National Capital Region.

Shabu prices in Metro Manila peaked at P6,800 per gram at the height of the government’s war against illegal drugs, but prices have gone down as the P6.8-shabu shipment that made its way to a warehouse in Cavite is now circulating on the streets. 

“It just shows (that) there is too much supply. Prices have gone down since the discovery of the magnetic lifters. The shabu is now on the streets, being used,” Aquino said in a mix of English and Filipino.

Aquino said there are indications that the shabu shipment was downloaded only in Metro Manila as shabu prices in adjacent regions, Central Luzon (Region 3) and Calabarzon (Region 4-A), remain high.

The PDEA chief earlier said they were able to track down the shipment but operatives were only able to recover a kilogram of shabu, as well as plastic, aluminum foil and other wrappings used to hide the drug. 

Aquino said the P6.8-billion shabu shipment should not be denied by the Bureau of Customs (BOC), whose leadership claimed that the empty magnetic lifters did not contain drugs as these allegedly tested negative during a swab test.

Aquino also hit BOC Commissioner Isidro Lapeña’s for not ordering a full-blown investigation on the shipment. 

“Never did I hear the commissioner (warn) that he will sack his employees (or) he will conduct a full-blown investigation on (who facilitated entry of) these particular magnetic lifters, which got out of customs. I never heard that,” Aquino added. 

Aquino said he has talked to President Duterte and cleared up their contradicting statements when the Chief Executive said the presence of shabu in the empty magnetic lifters was “pure speculation.”

The National Bureau of Investigation is probing three individuals who figured in the controversial shipment, namely former PDEA deputy director general for administration Ismael Fajardo, BOC intelligence officer Jimmy Guban and dismissed Senior Supt. Eduardo Acierto. 

Aquino said they are waiting for the committee report of Congress before charges are filed against the suspects. 

PHILIPPINE DRUG ENFORCEMENT AGENCY SHABU
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