DAGUPAN CITY, July 6 (PIA) –- The mayor of Dagupan asked the public to support the city government’s anti-drug campaign, admitting that he cannot solve the problem alone.
“I alone cannot do this, I need everyone’s support,” Mayor Benjamin S. Lim said during the signing of the pledge of commitment by 20 schools held at the city hall on Wednesday.
Lim said the campaign addresses the drug problem by reducing demands as well as prosecuting drug suspects.
He said schools should open their campuses for regular seminars involving reformed drug users to lecture students about the ill effects of illegal drugs.
The Dagupan City National High School has already started such seminars, according to Lemton Agricola, consultant to the anti-drugs campaign.
Lim suggested to schools to also conduct random drug checks among their students, saying that the scheme will soon be adopted for the employees of the city government.
Schools Supt. Alma Ruby C. Torio said drugs act as one of the barriers to quality education.
Stressing that the campaign will have more teeth if suspects are prosecuted, Lim advised witnesses to pursue cases against apprehended suspects.
“More often than not, suspects are not prosecuted,” he said.
Lamenting the lack of public empathy, he said, “Most of us are not serious about it because we are not affected. Let us not wait for our families to be affected.”
He advised the public for more involvement through identification of suspects and reporting any illegal drugs activity.
The campaign, he added, should also include program rehabilitating drug users and reintegrating them to the society, particularly a chance for employment.
More investments would come to the city if crime can be reduced, he said, attributing to drugs more than 50 percent of crimes committed.
The police have already netted five suspects involved in drug trafficking since the campaign was launched. (ANL/ARRF-PIA 1 Pangasinan)