Refining drug war data, amending anti-drug law, discussed in Robredo-US Embassy meeting
MANILA, Philippines – The need for a clear drug war data and the possibility of amending the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002 were among the topics Vice President Leni Robredo discussed with United States Embassy officials on Wednesday.
“Napag-usapan din ang mga kakulangan sa kasalukuyang kampanya at ang mga tulong na maaari pa nilang maibigay para lalong paigtingin ang kampanya laban sa droga,” Robredo said in a statement after the meeting.
(We have talked about the shortcomings of the current campaign and the help that they could extend to intensify the campaign against drugs.)
“Kabilang dito ang pagkakaroon ng malinaw na baseline data tungkol sa sitwasyon ng droga sa bansa, pag-aralan ang mga maaaring pag-amyenda sa Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act para tiyaking angkop pa rin ito sa ating kasalukuyang pangangailangan, at ang pagpapalakas ng mga programa para sa drug use prevention at community-based drug rehabilitation,” she added.
(This includes creating a clear baseline data about the drug situation in the country, studying possible amendments to the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act to assure that it is still appropriate for the current needs, and the strengthening of programs for drug use prevention and community-based drug rehabilitation.)
According to the Vice President, the meeting at the Quezon City Reception House was with U.S. agencies International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs ng State Department, Drug Enforcement Administration, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
Robredo said she was given a comprehensive briefing about the agencies’ anti-drug programs in the Philippines. During an interview on Tuesday, she revealed plans to meet the U.S. officials, although she clarified that she is talking with other allies as she needs all the help she could get.
The Vice President accepted last week the designation by President Rodrigo Duterte, for her to co-chair the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD). Robredo said the primary consideration for her was the chance to save innocent lives, as death tolls due to legitimate anti-drug operations have climbed to over 5,500.
Critics meanwhile claim the number could be around 11,000 to 30,000.
“Matagal na ang ugnayan ng aming opisina sa Embahada ng Amerika. Nagtulungan na kami sa iba’t ibang proyekto Nagpapasalamat ako na naging agaran ang kanilang pakikipagkita sa akin matapos ang aking pagkakatalaga,” Robredo said.
(Our office has been linked with the American Embassy for long. We have helped each other in various projects. I am thankful for their eagerness to meet with me after my designation.)
“Ipinahiwatig nila ang kanilang buong suporta at kooperasyon sa ating kampanya laban sa iligal na droga. At, bilang kaibigan ng Pilipinas, gagawin nila ang lahat para tayo ay magtagumpay sa laban na ito,” she added. /muf
(They signified their whole support and cooperation to our campaign against illegal drugs. And as the Philippines’ friend, they will do everything they can for us to succeed in this fight.) /muf
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