BAUKO, Mountain Province - After undergoing a three-month rehabilitation, 55 drug surrenderees here graduated with negative drug tests at a well attended graduation rites at the Luis Hora Memorial Regional Hospital Hall.

The graduation on January 12 was attended by government officials and officers from concerned government agencies and parents of the surredenderee-graduates.

“Yes to God and No to drug lord” was the rallying cry of the 55 graduates who vowed not to go back to drug use either prohibited drugs or alcohol.

The 55 drug users were given rehabilitation sessions by Master Del Pe of the MDP Foundation and Clean Life Program who also confirmed and awarded their being graduates.

Master Del Pe gave the drug user-surrenderee healing, meditation and rehab lessons from 9 to 12 o’clock in the morning three times a week.

Other hours of the week were devoted to learning first aid lessons from the Bureau of Fire (BoF) and ways to do organic farming from the Department of Agriculture-Office of the Municipal Agriculturist.

Del Pe is from Cervantes and a martial arts instructor before he went to mediation and healing. His Cleanlife Program founded in Texas, USA helped victims of addiction hooked to drugs, alcohol, including internet, sex, gambling, smoking and other compulsive behavior in 45 countries.

Bauko Mayor Abraham Akilit when approached by Master del Pe positively responded to the offer of Del Pe for the rehabilitation of the drug surrenderees.

Akilit told the graduates no turning back after they have successfully undergone the three month community-based rehabilitation program.

Staff from the local government unit supported the activity including the drug surrenderees’ meals and other rehab expenses.

Philippine Drugs Enforcement Authority (PDEA) regional director Juvenal Azurin challenged the surrenderee- graduates to give relief to other drug users to kick drug use and be true to their selves.

There are 171 drug surrenderees from Bauko who are mostly taking shabu.

Meanwhile, Technical Skills and Development Authority (Tesda) provincial director Gabriel Cayacay said the graduates have indicated their interest for learning the skill of welding and encouraged them to go into entrepreneurship with Department of Trade and Industry provincial Director Juliet Lucas urging them to submit their business plan through the DTI’s Negosyo Center program.

Quinn Lacwasan, president of the newly formed organization Chosen United Reform Society (CURES) with members from the 55 drug surrenderee-graduates said the rehabilitation program has given them a new life and that they will not go back to drugs again. (Gina Dizon)