Anti-Drug Abuse Councils vital in PH success on war vs drugs: AAo

MANILA - Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo AAo said local government units (LGUs) serving as frontliners in the government's war on drugs is vital to its success.

In a press briefing at the 2018 National Anti-Drug Abuse Council (ADAC) Performance Award on Friday, AAo said unlike Latin American countries faced by the same illegal drug problems, the Philippines managed to curb the drug trade as it strengthened barangays, municipalities, and provincial governments to combat illegal drugs on the ground.

If we are going to compare our efforts with what happened in some Latin American countries like Columbia, Mexico, Guatemala, I think ito yung wala sa kanila eh, wala silang ADAC (they do not have (ADAC), wala silang (they do not have) institutionalized rehab centers, and even the commitment of the government to fight drugs, AAo said

The DILG conferred the 1st National ADAC Performance Awards to 241 outstanding LGUs with exemplary efforts, through their ADACs, in complementing the national government's measures to eradicate the country's illegal drugs problem.

The audit criteria for the selection of awardees are organized local ADAC, implementation of ADAC plans and programs, fund allocation, support to ADACs in component LGUs, and conduct of quarterly meetings.

AAo said they intend to institutionalize the ADAC program by urging Congress to pass it through legislation, a move supported by former Special Assistant to the President Christopher Lawrence Bong Go.

Sana maisabatas itong Anti-Drug Abuse Council, not only sa memorandum circular ng DILG but maisabatas na ito para magkaroon sila ng sarili nilang pondo at magiging mandatory na po sa bawat local government units (We hope the Anti-Drug Abuse Council gets legislated, not only through a DILG memorandum circular but a legislation so that they can have their own funds and it will be mandatory for every local government units), Go, who is running for senator in the 2019 polls, said.

AAo cited that narco-politicians' municipalities were disqualified for the ADAC awards and the Seal of Good Local Governance award.

AAo said the war against drugs is a whole-of-government approach and can only be won when everyone chips in their contribution.

LGUs in the barangay, municipal, and provincial levels are mandated to convene their ADACs in order to address first-hand drug issues in areas of their jurisdiction. (PNA)

Source: Philippines News Agency