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PDEA: 300,000 drug users rehabilitated under Marcos admin

MANILA, Philippines — Over 300,000 drug-dependent individuals have been rehabilitated under the administration of President Marcos, according to the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency.

The PDEA said that at least 314,917 persons who used drugs now live renewed lives after completing the community-based rehabilitation program in their barangays.

“Powered by a renewed conviction that human life is precious and must be saved at all costs, the government has put a premium on preserving lives ripped apart by the scourge of illegal drugs in the form of rehabilitation, interventions and social reintegration programs,” the PDEA said in a statement.

To supplement the rehabilitation efforts, the PDEA issued Memorandum Circular 2023-042 or the Protocol for Providing Assistance for Voluntary Rehabilitation and Intervention and the Creation of Regional Public Assistance Desks.

The memorandum circular sets the stage for the institutionalization of a procedure in helping drug dependents gain access to appropriate intervention.

A total of 116 drug dependents have so far sought assistance at the public assistance desks.

Last year, the government established 105 Balay Silangan Reformation Centers, producing 1,854 graduates.

Since the program’s launch in 2018, 535 reformation centers have been created, which helped 7,526 reformists and provided employment to 2,123 former drug users.

The PDEA also launched the Adbokasiya LABan sa Iligal na Droga or ALAB, a program that empowers advocates to become force multipliers in the conduct of reformation programs.

Up to 5,619 people have joined training seminars in all provinces and highly urbanized cities.

Marcos’ anti-drug campaign has so far resulted in the deaths of 195 drug suspects in alleged shootouts with anti-narcotics agents from July 1, 2022 to Dec. 31, 2023.

The figure is lower than the 3,968 suspected drug pushers and users killed during the administration of former president Rodrigo Duterte, a decrease of 95.08 percent.