By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
Speaking before the Provincial Drug Summit at the L’Fisher Hotel in Bacolod City yesterday, Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB) chair Catalino Cuy, who served as keynote speaker, admitted, despite the ongoing war on illegal drugs being waged by the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte, there are still between four and five million Filipinos involved with illegal drugs.
He said it is difficult to determine an exact number but, noted, “There are 1.3 million who have already surrendered.”
Cuy said the government plans to implement a revitalized anti-drug campaign next year.
He pointed out, last October, Duterte signed Executive Order No. 66, which institutionalized the Philippine Anti-Drug Strategy (PADS). The order was then followed by a memorandum circular signed by Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea that ordered all government entities to be “active in the anti-illegal drug activities.”
“This is a good development in the campaign against illegal drugs,” the DDB chair explained. “It will have a renewed energy, especially in the demand and supply reduction.”
He noted, while the media is reporting about supply reduction, there is also a drop in demand, which he credited to “rehabilitation, reintegration, international and regional cooperation, public awareness and alternative livelihood.”
Meanwhile, he said PADS was presented earlier this week to various government agencies in Manila.
“We put parameters so we can measure it if we are winning or losing the war,” Cuy explained./DGB, WDJ