LAGAWE, Ifugao, Feb. 28 (PIA) -- More than 600 individuals in the province joined the nationwide advocacy walk “Lipunin at Kalampagin Ang Droga (LAKAD) Tokhang 2” in a bid to inform the public of the government’s anti-illegal drugs campaign particularly the relaunched Oplan Tokhang,
Consisting of uniformed personnel and representatives from the academe, government and non-government organizations and the community, the participants assembled at the Lagawe Central School for a parade around the poblacion. They had posters and information materials about ‘Tokhang’.
Police Inspector Danilo Rubio explained that the Philippine National Police launched the “Oplan Tokhang 2” in Camp Crame on 19 January 2018 after President Duterte ordered the PNP in December last year to assist the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency in carrying the government’s war on drugs.
In its revival, the PNP’s house-to-house anti-drug operations will only be done during office hours and no longer at night time to ensure a more transparent and accountable campaign against illegal drugs.
“Tokhang Teams in proper uniform must be led by a police commissioned officer and shall conduct operations from 8 am to 5 pm, Monday to Friday. All anti-drug operations must be intelligence-driven and founded on the fundamental principles of respect for human rights and strict adherence to the rule of law,” he stated.
Asipulo Mayor Armando Domilod assured his support to the anti-illegal drugs campaign of the government sharing that the local government unit is providing resources for its effective implementation through the municipal police station.
Provincial Government’s chief administrative officer Rosemarie Lindawan, who represented the governor, lauded the participants who joined the momentous event. “This program of the government really needs all the help we can get from the community as they are closest to the people whom we pledged to serve and protect,” she said.
Lindawan also stressed that in Ifugao, the approach to the fight against the use of illegal drugs has become a trend, referring to the community-based rehabilitation program of the Ifugao Reflection Camp whose template has been adopted by some agencies.
“We hope this kind of positive approach will be sustained. It is noteworthy also that our uniformed men are taking on the lead to really dialogue and consult with the people to get their cooperation in the government's program against illegal drug use. Let us continue supporting this kind of positive approach and drive home the message that if there is one thing people should get high on it should be God, not drugs,” she said. Marcelo B. Lihgawon (JDP/MBL- PIA CAR, Ifugao)