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Cot PADAC: Build up strategies to win fight against drug abuse

AMAS, Kidapawan City (March 30) – Aside from actively taking part in the national campaign against drug abuse and proliferation of illegal drugs, the Provincial Anti-Drug Abuse Council (PADAC) of Cotabato now focuses more extensively in the programs and approaches that would strengthen the fight against drug abuse.

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In the first quarterly meeting of PADAC held on March 29, 2016, certain drug rehabilitation programs were tackled by the body and assessed on how these programs have been practical solutions to the drug abuse problem.

Cot 3rd District Board Member Jonathan Tabara, designated representative of Gov Emmylou “Lala” to the PADAC led the discussion on certain government rehabilitation programs which include the After Care Program, National Drug Education Program (NDEP) including Barkada Kontra Droga (BAKADA), Dept of Health (DOH) guidelines on treatment of drug offenders and how the provincial government is doing as to its implementation.

The PADAC also discussed the plans and programs of the provincial government to brace up the campaign against illegal drugs focusing on the proposed membership expansion to Civil Society Organizations which is deemed to make the campaign against the drug menace stronger.

This include reactivating the Municipal Anti-Drug Abuse Councils (MADAC) in line with the national government’s thrust as well as other strategies that involve the stakeholders in waging an all-out campaign against drug abuse.

“Each one of us must take an active role in the government’s war on drugs to ensure that these programs and strategies would turn-out well and help as many drug dependents to have a new life”, said Tabara adding that the administration of Gov Emmylou “Lala” J. Taliṅo-Mendoza strongly supports the anti-illegal drug campaign of President Rodrigo Duterte and the accompanying programs of the national government to eliminate the drug peril.

Concerned offices of the capitol and national line agencies likewise gave updates and latest development regarding the programs. Representative from the Deped, Cot IPHO/DOH, PSWDO, PNP, PDEA, and the DILG each reported the development in their respective programs for helping and rehabilitating drug users/dependents.

The DepEd representative informed that schools continue to educate students on the negative consequences of illegal drugs and engage them to the comprehensive National Drug Education Program (NDEP) which provides a holistic approach in preventing and eliminating the menace of drugs. At present the DepEd implements the Barkada KontraDroga (BAKADA) in many schools nationwide.

Dr. Eva C. Rabaya, Provincial IPHO Head, informed the body as to the guidelines set by the health department in treating drug dependents. She assured that the IPHO is ready to accept surrendering drug users and provide them necessary treatment and management.

On the other hand, Vergelita Guillaran, PSWD Officer discussed on the specific duties and responsibilities of her office in effecting rehabilitation program or treatment for a drug dependent.

She said the After Care Program is very helpful but at the same time delicate in recovering “clients” because this offers a special support and help the drug dependents to reconnect with their families and rebuild their self-esteem. Like the IPHO, she said the PWSDO is more than willing to cater to individuals who have successfully undergone drug treatment.

Likewise, representatives from the PNP, PDEA and DILG also presented their respective updates as to the simultaneous campaign against the drug menace. They emphasized that the government maintains a strong stance against illegal drugs leading to the arrests of many drug suspects and surrendering of thousands of drug users.

The agencies also emphasized that their offices, along with other concerned agencies are mandated to act and collaborate to achieve a drug-free society.

Among the important parts of the meeting are the strengthening of MADAC’s and coming up with effective strategies in line with the concerned government agencies’ guidelines of the implementation of drug rehabilitation program.

This is part of the PADAC’s move to align its program with that of the national government and become more effective in its functions and responsibilities and become instrumental in gathering and updating of data on all drug related incidents in the respective towns of Cotabato and determine its effects on the peace and order situation.

More stakeholders are expected to participate in the succeeding conferences called by the PADAC to build up collaborative action in curbing and eventually eliminating drug abuse in many communities. (JIMMY STA. CRUZ/Photo by ROVILLE ANN SOTTO-PGO-IDCD/MEDIA CENTER)

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