Poe decries government’s lack of support on war vs drugs
By Mortz C. Ortigoza
CALASIAO – Presidential trailblazer Senator Mary Grace Poe assailed the national government’s lack of support for the revival and funding of Barangay Anti-Drug Abuse Councils (BADAC) which were at the forefront in the fight against drug peddlers.
“During the past national administrations we have BADACs but these were not supported now. The problem we face now is we lack policemen compare to the sheer number of our population,” she said during a consulation with Calasiao residents.
She cited the need to give budget to the barangays in the fight against illegal drugs. “They should be given the full support so they can free their villages from the menace.”
She recalled a time when representatives from the barangays in the country went to the Department of Interior & Local Government to ask for financial support in the fight against drugs, they went home empty handed.
DILG was headed then by Poe’s presidential rival the survey’s cellar dweller Mar Roxas.
BADACs as local councils are tasked to conduct information and education on illegal drugs and formulate plans and programs to prevent proliferation of illegal drugs in their barangays
According to lawyer Ferdinand Panes of the DILG-Iloilo, BADACs were created as a local council way back in 1988 but have never been an active group as far as fighting drug abuse is concerned.
Poe said the revival of the BADAC will be her agenda if she wins the presidential poll next year.
“Paano ma sugpo ang problem sa drug sa ating bansa? Sabi nila nine sa bawat ten sa ating barangay meron ng problema o napasukan na ng drugs. Isa po ang ating pino-propose na ang barangay ay dapat bigyan ng utoridad at kakayahan ng DILG para maka partner ng mga pulis sa pakikipaglaban sa druga (How can we eliminate illegal drugs in the country? They said nine out ten of the villages have problems with this menace. That is why I propose that the barangay officials will be given authority and capability by the DILG so they can partner with the police in the fight against drugs)”.
She cited that empowering the village officials will be effective because the barangay chairmen knew almost everybody and almost everything in his area.
“Alam niya kung sino ang may bagong motorcycle. Alam niya kung may bagong pinanganak dahil siya ang parang tatay o di kaya nanay ng isang barangay (He knows who owns a new motor bike. He knows who was born because he is the father or mother of the village)”.
Poe was in Barangay Nalsian, a perennially flood stricken village, here last Tuesday to answer various questions fielded by different sectors that concern on teachers’ low salary, Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps), students scholarship, flood that haunts villages, benefits of senior citizens, illegal drugs, and, women’s concern.
She said that aside from putting more teeth on the BADAC, she said more funds must be given to the Department of Health to establish rehabilitation centers for poor victims of illegal drugs..
“Kung ikaw ay nalulung sa druga, kailangan mo magpagaling. Kaso wala pang programa para diyan kung wala kang pera. Kaya doon sa Department of Health budget tinutulak po natin na dapat magkaroon ng rehab centers sa ibat-ibang region para sa mahihirap nating kababayan na nalulong sa druga para mawala sila sa kanilang bisyo, ” she said.
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