PAGADIAN CITY, Nov. 15 (PIA) -- As of 2022, the identified drug-affected barangays in Zamboanga Peninsula region reduced to 26%, per report from the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA)-9.
Over six years now, since the implementation of the stringent war against illegal drugs in the country that was realized by former President Rodrigo Roa Duterte, the region has only now 490 drug-afflicted barangays.
“Through our efforts sa patuloy na pagkumbinsi, we were able to bring it down to 490 drug-affected areas from 1,904 barangays in the region. Hopefully maibaba pa natin as we continue to strive for resilient communities,” PDEA-9 Regional Director Emerson L. Margate said during the kick-off ceremony of the Drug Abuse Prevention and Control week (DAPC) recently.
Director Margete has also emphasized that the campaign against illegal drugs in ZamPen is ‘very humanitarian,’ as this was crafted by the member agencies through the Dangerous Drug Board.
“We are embarking on a very humanitarian anti-drug campaign with a holistic approach,” Dir. Margate said.
Meanwhile, school leaders, representatives from local and national government agencies inked a pledge of commitment supporting the regime's fight against illegal drugs as part of the DAPC week.
One of the aims is to empower the youth especially students from all levels, to combat illicit drugs at their respective learning spaces and to help achieve a drug-free Philippines as a whole.
“We believe that adequately educating the youth in elementary and high school about the dangers of drug abuse, will help us drive home the message that prohibited drugs can ruin their future and even cost them their lives,” Police Regional Office – 9 Director Neil B. Alinsañgan affirmed.
Further, most of the police officers were being deployed to schools to serve as lecturers of the evil effects of drugs among students and children, through the Project Resistant Education Against Drugs for the Youth (READY) in collaboration with the Department of Education.
“This is very timely as face-to-face classes are now resumed. Kaligtasan niyo ay sagot ng kapulisan, tulung-tulong po tayo laban sa iligal na droga,” Director Alinsañgan added.
Dangerous drugs continue to threaten the health and lives of people, thus continue to urge the general public to join the government in the fight against illegal drugs and be relentless in its quest to make the Philippines a drug-free country.
“As we continue to fight this drug menace, we have proven for the past years, we realize that together we can make big impact on this fight,” Margate exclaimed.
The DAPC week 2022 will run from November 13-19 in pursuance to Presidential Proclamation No. 124 dated November 26, 2001, as this aims to find means and ways to address the anti-illegal problems in this part of the country.
This year’s DAPC week is dubbed “addressing drug challenges in health and humanitarian crises,” with the #CareInCrises and is organized by the Department of the Interior and Local Government. (NBE/JRA/PIA9-Pagadian City)