SOME village officials in Cagayan de Oro City slammed the plan of the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) to mark drug-free homes with stickers as part of the government's new anti-illegal drug strategy.
The DILG is still in the consultation process with the police and other sectors to structure concrete criteria in identifying which homes have no drug involvement.
Under the proposal, houses with no stickers will be subject for intervention by the authorities.
Barangay 23 village chief Jaime Frias II said the Interior Department's move is a bad idea and worse than the 'Tokhang' (Knock and plead) strategy of the Philippine National Police (PNP).
Frias said posting stickers to label drug-free homes violates the constitutional rights of an individual and invades the right of privacy.
He also said the DILG move is discriminating in nature.
"One of the effects is discrimination and will be a precedent to another kind like it. But we still have to hear from DILG. It's best to hear first before making moves about it," Frias said.
Barangay Puntod chairman Marvin Beja urged the DILG to study the proposal carefully and design concrete criteria to make it more effective.
Beja said marking homes with stickers does not guarantee that the people living inside have either engaged or transformed from the illegal drug activities.
"Kinsay mag-identify nga drug free? (Who will identify that its drug free) Kinsay mag-evaluate ug mag-confirm nga tinuod nga drug free. (Who will evaluate and confirm that it is indeed drug free) Unsay category ug mga pamaagi," (What is the category and what are the rules in identifying that it is drug free) Beja asked.
Beja said the plan will also cause discrimination and unfair impression from the public.
Beja said the DILG proposal is only made to flatter President Rodrigo Duterte that the agency is doing something in the government's war on drugs.
"Nakita nako nga publicity ug pasipsip lang ni sa president aron ingnon nga naa silay performance," (I can see that this is just a publicity and to kiss ass with the president that they are doing something) Beja said.
"Naa gihapon discrimination ug pag-degrade sa dignidad sa tawo. Kung naay bisita unya makita ang sticker meaning previously naay addict ug ikaw tagtungod modepensa. Dili ta kabalo kung unsay reaction sa ubang tawo," (There is also discrimination and the intent to degrade the dignity of a person. If you have a visitor and they will see the sticker which means there was an addict before so you will end up defensive. We don't know how people react) Beja added.
Beja calls on the DILG to study the proposal further and step up only into another strategy when the previous policies and anti-drug campaigns have at least accomplished 80 percent.
The Association of the Barangay Councils (ABC) in the city will gather today with DILG representatives and part of the agenda is drug related concerns.
"Basin ma-tackle na sa meeting sa Liga ng mga Barangay,"Frias said.
Superintendent Lemuel Gonda, spokesperson of the Police Regional Office-Northern Mindanao (PRO-10), said the police will wait for instructions from the DILG.
"Sa PNP, we are just following on the guidance. PNP is under DILG. PNP are just enforcing the laws," Gonda said.
Like and follow SunStar Philippines on Facebook.