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Sotto’s anti-drug advocacy

By Erik Espina

SENATE President Vicente “Tito” Sotto III remains one of the leading lights in safeguarding the welfare and future of the Filipino family in his commitment to fight against illegal drugs. His record as former Vice Mayor of Quezon City essays his passion as a pillar in the drug watch concept, cascaded into smallest unit of governance, the Barangay.

The off-shoot of such visionary template is currently replicated under the concept of the BADAC – Barangay Anti-Drug Abuse Council as the first line of defense of a community-based campaign versus the proliferation of what is
now considerably a national menace.

In reinforcing and complimenting such top to bottom strategy is Senate Resolution No. 702 by Senator Sotto III, urging the President of the Philippines to create the “Presidential Office on Drugs and Crimes.” Quoting the “whereas” clauses to wit: “The perennial problem of the anti-drug and crime operation is the failure to effectively prosecute the cases. At present, we have a dismissal rate of 80% to 90% of our drug cases. Despite the strong cases filed, cases are eventually dismissed due to lack of coordination between law enforcers and prosecutors especially in the case build-up stage.

To address our problems…a PRESIDENTIAL OFFICE ON DRUGS AND CRIMES shall be created through an Executive Order. Purpose of this office is to ensure cases be effectively prosecuted. Said office shall formulate programs/protocols to strengthen prosecution of drug cases and assist law enforcers. State and Public Prosecutors will be designated to the PNP, PDEA and NBI to advise, supervise and monitor anti-drug and crimes operations especially high-profile drug cases. Said office shall supervise and make in to one body the DILG, PNP, PDEA, NBI, BoC, DoJ. The Sol-Gen is designated Commander of this office. There shall be Deputy-Commanders Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao taken from present Undersecretaries/Asecs from DoJ, DILG, DDB, PNP, PDEA in concurrent capacity at no cost.”