The Negros Occidental provincial government launched on Thursday a training for government advocates in the intensified campaign against illegal drugs in partnership with the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) under the ALAB or the Adbokasiya Laban sa Iligal na Droga.
The conduct of the Training of Trainers (TOT) is in line with the memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed by Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson and PDEA-Western Visayas Assistant Regional Director Marjorie Ballesteros in rites held at the Mambukal Convention Hall in Murcia town.
“Our anti-drug abuse campaign must be multi-faceted to be effective. Education and activities like this one are key components of our drug prevention campaign. By working together to address the root causes of illegal drug use, we can mitigate the harm associated with this serious problem and save more lives,” Lacson told the more than 120 participants of the three-day training.
The trainees include members of the Provincial Anti-Drug Abuse Council (PADAC), personnel of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), focal persons of City and Municipal Anti-Drug Abuse Councils (C/MADAC) and local health and information officers.
They will be equipped and educated on the Barangay Drug Clearing Program (BDCP), advocacy campaign and Drug-Free Workplace Program of the PDEA.
After the training, the participant will conduct at least three BDCP lectures annually in the community.
The MOU serves as the initial commitment of both parties for the sustainable implementation of Dangerous Drugs Board Regulation No. 4, series of 2021, which aims to reduce drug affectation in the country through a culture of cooperation, respect for human dignity, holistic strategies and a whole-of-nation approach to addressing the drug problem in the communities.
The provincial government provided logistical and financial support for the conduct of the TOT, while PDEA provided the resource persons and materials for training.
Among those who witnessed the signing rites were Don Salvador Benedicto Mayor Laurence Marxlen Dela Cruz, DILG Provincial Director Teodora Sumagaysay, PDEA assistant provincial officer Jeanette Reyes, Lt. Col. Norberto Barniso of the Negros Occidental Police Provincial Office Police Community Affairs Development Unit, and Provincial Administrator Rayfrando Diaz II.
The signing of the manifesto of commitment for the Nagkakaisang Adbokasiya Laban sa Iligal na Droga capped the activity.
As of August, Negros Occidental has 441 drug-cleared barangays, or 73.38 percent of the 601 villages of the province. (PNA)