The Department of Interior and Local (DILG) said Thursday that 605 local government units (LGUs), civil society organizations (CSOs), regional focal persons (RFPs) and alternates were bestowed with the 2020 Anti-Drug Abuse Council (ADAC) Special Awards for their outstanding efforts in support of the Duterte administration’s fight against illegal-drugs in the country.

DILG Secretary Eduardo M. Año said that of the 605 awardees, “273 are LGUs that have cleared their previously drug-affected barangays; 234 are LGUs that sustained the status of their unaffected barangays; 70 are CSOs that have persisted with their anti-illegal drug efforts; and 28 are DILG RFPs and alternates.’’

“These awards are testament to the work of our LGUs and our CSO-partners in clearing our barangays of illegal-drugs despite the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic,” said Año. 

“Time is of the essence and we must work both smart and hard in order to eradicate the drug trade in the Philippines and establish a system for the sustained status of drug-cleared LGUs and barangays,” he added.

Año as chair of the ADAC National Audit Team (ANT), the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB), the Philippine Drug Enforcement Authority (PDEA), Philippine National Police (PNP), and the Caritas Manila as CSO representative spearheaded the conferment of the 2020 ADAC Special Awards this year.

He explained that to come up with the 273 LGUs awardees with drug-cleared status of their previously drug-affected barangays, PDEA provided the parameters for the LGU recipients based on the recently issued policy on drug clearing, assessing a three-year period from 2017 to 2019. 

“Among other parameters set by PDEA are: interventions for identified drug pushers; barangays have submitted their BADAC watchlist of drug personalities to PDEA; Anti-illegal drug campaign of law enforcement agencies; and, various anti-illegal drugs advocacy campaign programs,’’ the DILG said.

For the 234 LGUs that have sustained the drug-free status of their unaffected barangays, PDEA used the following criteria: revitalization and activation of their Barangay Anti-Drug Abuse Council (BADAC) as per DILG Memorandum Circular 2015-063; at least one barangay has been identified by PDEA as drug-free; and, city/municipality/barangay issued Ordinances/Executive Orders on the implementation of Anti-illegal Drugs program, among others. 

On the other hand, the DILG Philippine Anti-Illegal Drugs Strategy-Project Management Office (PADS-PMO) provided the parameters for the CSO Awardees. Recognition of CSOs will be based on their accreditation and continued efforts in anti-illegal drug programs/activities despite the challenges during the pandemic. 

The DILG chief added that the CSOs were also instrumental in the success of the Community Based Drug Rehabilitation Program (CBDRP) leading to the rehabilitation of 75,077 individuals nationwide as of October 2020.

Meanwhile, the DILG ADAC RFPs and alternates were chosen for their performance and continued commitment to excellence in support to the anti-illegal drug activities and advocacy campaign of the department. 

“Thank you as well to the DILG ADAC RFPs and Alternates, together with your PDEA counterparts, for your commitment to free our LGUs and barangays from the scourge of illegal drugs,” Año ended. 

Source: Manila Bulletin (