OROQUIETA, Misamis Occidental (PIA)—The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) together with the provincial government of Misamis Occidental launched, February 5, its anti-illegal drugs advocacy program dubbed “Buhay Ay Ingatan, Droga’y Ayawan” (BIDA).
This program aims to reduce the demand for drugs in communities by stepping up and focusing on all aspects of the war on drugs.
Together with advocacy support groups, force multipliers, non-government organizations, and other stakeholders, a memorandum of understanding (MOU) was signed to show commitment and support for the BIDA program.
PLtGen Rhodel Sermonia, the deputy chief of administration for the Philippine National Police (PNP), thanked Gov. Henry Oaminal of Misamis Occidental for continuing to support PNP activities.
“Ako po ay nagpapasalamat sa lalawigan ng Misamis Occidental na napakaganda po ang supporta na ipinapakita ng ating mahal na Gov. Henry Oaminal at mga mayors dahil ‘yung presensya po nila ngayon, presensya ng bawat sectoral leaders, advocacies support groups, mga faith based organizations ay nagpapatunay o it manifest that the spirit of voluntarism in Misamis Occidental is very, very much alive and very, very much strong,” he said.
Sermonia also said illegal drugs are the biggest problem in the whole country. He explained how to coordinate and strengthen some strategies and efforts to cut down on the supply, such as operations and reducing demand in partnership with the police, local governments, stakeholders, and different sectoral groups.
For his part, Oaminal emphasized the importance of the BIDA program, urging everyone to avoid drugs that destroy people’s lives and even those of future generations.
Oaminal also assured the PNP, the national government, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., and SILG Lawyer Benjamin C. Abalos, Jr., that the provincial government of Misamis Occidental will give all the support it needs, not only in words but in action.
“The resources of the province of Misamis Occidental, human resources, intelligence competence, and financial resources. We have appropriated and part of our budget these funds that support the PNP, Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), and others in the fight of illegal drugs, not only in cleansing the province from the evil of illegal drugs but ultimately to preserve a very good peace and order situation here in the province,” Oaminal said.
Meanwhile, DILG Cluster Head Sanivier Patoc urged all LGUs to support the BIDA program.
“Let our different LGUs reflect in their peace and order and public safety plans the so-called local anti-drug plan of action because this document states that LGUs would have the power to fight against the proliferation of illegal drugs,” he said.
Misamis Occidental Police Provincial Office (MOPPO) and its partner agencies held the Bida Roll-Out and Serbisyo Caravan in Misamis Occidental, where 210 graduates from the community-based drug rehabilitation program were able to get basic government services.
Services included free medical consultation and medicine, free eye and dental check-ups, free COVID-19 vaccinations, Libreng Gupit alayng Pulis, libreng tuli, free medicine, and vegetable seedlings; a Sim Card Registration Assistance Desk; ear piercing for women; a road safety seminar and livelihood training; the Philippine ID System (application and validation); and free legal consultation.
The graduates also brought home packs of rice and relief goods from the provincial government of Misamis Occidental. (SMRN/PIA-10/Misamis Occidental)