Special drug court judge pushes for distribution of Cebuano info materials

The Mindanao Examiner Regional Newspaper - - News - Anthoni Lomotan) (Roi

A SPECIAL drug court judge in Dumaguete City has suggested to government agencies concerned with drug prevention to produce information materials related to drug abuse that are translated into Cebuano language for better understanding of the public.

Special drug court Branch 36 Judge Joseph Elmaco made the suggestion during a recent Kapihan Sa PIA in observance of the Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Week. “I think it is high time to review our approaches whether it is effective,” he said.

Elmaco underscored that people in the barangays would be more informed on the ill-effects of drug abuse as well as the laws related to it if these are relayed in the local language. Two years ago, Elmaco said he wrote a Cebuano translation of Republic Act 9165 (The Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002) and its rules and presented it to the local government for reproduction but did not get a response from officials.

But now, Elmaco said he is open and willing to collaborate with government agencies concerned with drug control and prevention for reproduction of his translation of the said law as well as in formulating other information materials in Cebuano language.

Elmaco also encouraged government agencies to install billboards in barangay halls that state the general provisions of R.A. 9165 which is also translated into Cebuano. “The point there is the massive education campaign so that the people who will be apprehended in the future cannot tell us they are not informed,” he said.

Negros Oriental Drug Abuse and Prevention Council Action Officer Fernando Martinez said they welcome Elmaco’s suggestion.

Martinez said the council has funds for the production of information materials and they could probably first distribute information materials in Dumaguete City.

Senior Superintendent Dionardo Carlos, commander of the Negros Oriental Provincial Police Office, also welcomed Elmaco’s suggestion and committed to assign police personnel who will help distribute these materials, but he also underscored the role of community stakeholders in strengthening this advocacy campaign.

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