Dumaguete officials throw support behind ‘Rehabinasyon’ program

DUMAGUETE City Mayor Felipe Antonio Remollo led local officials, the youth, the academe, law enforcement agencies and other sectors in supporting the government’s program “Rehabinasyon”.

They announced the support as the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD) and the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) conducted a forum in Dumaguete City over the weekend, which is described as a holistic approach in addressing the illegal drugs problem in the country.

PCOO Assistant Secretary Ramon Cualoping III stressed during the forum that one person or one agency alone cannot fight the war on drugs and that “the President needs all of us to make this country a better place.”

The problem on illegal drugs is the problem of all, including the community and the family, among others, he said.

Cualoping said Rehabinasyon is “an all-encompassing program on anti-illegal drugs.”

He debunked the claims of a senator, which he did not name, that the administration is not doing anything to address the needs of drug addicts. The ICAD is the government’s response to this, and offers not just rehabilitation but aftercare as well, he added.

Remollo lauded the PCOO and ICAD for including Dumaguete in the Rehabinasyon caravan as it will complement efforts by the city government, which recently started its community-based rehabilitation of drug surrenderers.

He exhorted barangay officials to do their part in supporting the city’s rehabilitation effort as well as Rehabinasyon, highlighting that peace and order is a priority for Dumaguete considering it was named one of the best places to retire in the world.

Remollo also warned the surrenderers, who have not volunteered to avail of the free community-based rehabilitation program, that if they return to their old ways of engaging in illegal drug use or trade, “the police will go after you.”

Also present were Undersecretary Benjamin Reyes of the Dangerous Drugs Board, Director Derrick Carreon of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, Assistant Sec. Aurora Ignacio of the Office of the President, Dr. Ivan Hoe Escartin of the Department of Health, Bureau of Corrections Deputy Director Ramon Melvin Buenafe, among others. (PNA)

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