FORMER Cagayan de Oro mayor Constantino Jaraula called on authorities to account for the illegal drugs they have seized even as he urged them to start going after the big fishes in the narcotics underworld.
“The public deserves to know how and where the confiscated drugs are disposed off,” said Jaraula in a press statement sent to this paper.
Jaraula said this as he spoke about the need to uphold “true values of citizenship and as children of God” during the commencement exercises of the Opol Community College presided by Opol Mayor Maximino Seno and OCC acting president Dolorita Nacua-Arao on Friday. Seno is the chairman of the OCC’s board of trustees.
Jaraula said there will be no need for the National Police to carry out a campaign like Oplan Tokhang “if there are no addicts; there will be no addicts if basic family values are nurtured; furthermore, there will be no addicts if there are no ‘pushers’ who make the drugs available; there will be no pushers if there are no financiers, and there will be no financiers if government – especially the [Bureau of] Customs, the PDEA [Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency] and the police do not connive with them.”
Jaraula cited the high ranking of the Philippines in drug addiction and teenage pregnancy which, he said, are both reflective of the collapse of basic value formation in the family and in the neighborhood.
He challenged educators and religious leaders to articulate on these issues in the classrooms and in the churches, even for only three to five minutes on any forum or suitable occasion.
Jaraula also called on citizens to support President Duterte’s campaign against drug addiction for the country’s progress and survival.
He welcomed the graduates to a fast changing world, far different from that known by their parents, citing extreme climate change that find islands and continents variously damaged by both extreme heat and flooding in the same period, and signs of the return of the Cold War “if world leaders continue with their myopic and greedy view of the international community.”
At the same time Jaraula lauded what he called as the “bold, aggressive and visionary leadership” of Mayor Seno, citing him for Opol town’s “tremendously increased” economy, and for building up strongly the foundation of the municipality’s educational system.
Jaraula, who also served as congressman and who authored the law splitting Cagayan de Oro into two congressional districts, said Opol deserves to be converted into a city “given its natural resources, robust economy, political maturity, and fast increasing population.”