Five hundred student leaders from different secondary public and private schools in Valenzuela took their oath as the city government brings the war against illegal drugs to campuses.
City Mayor REX Gatchalian administered the oath-taking of the new officers of the Student Anti-Drug Abuse Council (SADAC) composed of student council leaders on September 30, 2016, at the Valenzuela City Auditorium.
Senior Supt. Ronaldo Redoña Mendoza, city police chief, and Superintendent Meliton Zurbano of the Department of Education-Valenzuela attended the oath-taking ceremony for the 9th Batch of SADAC.
The student leaders vowed to avoid illegal drugs and committed to help promote a clean and healthy environment on their campuses.
Explaining the duties of the newest batch of SADAC, 1st District Councilor Tony Espiritu, Valenzuela Anti-Drug Abuse Council (VADAC) action officer, said the student leaders would help the authorities by reporting the presence of drugs or activities related to drugs on their campuses as well as disseminating information through symposiums and film viewings.
Mayor Gatchalian underscored the importance of the involvement of student leaders in the city’s efforts to stamp out drugs, as they have direct contact with other youths in schools.
“You were chosen by your fellow students to be SADAC officers because they have faith in you and they are listening to you. You may use your influence and what you have learned today to fight drug abuse,” he said.
Mayor Gatchalian also encouraged the new SADAC officers to develop their own strategies for monitoring drug related activities on their campuses and not to hesitate to seek help from the city police and VADAC if necessary.
City police chief Mendoza reported that the city’s crime rate “went down significantly” from 8 to 10 cases a day to 3 to 4 cases since the launch of Valenzuela Ayaw sa Droga (VAD) campaign on August 8.
Mendoza also said that as of September this year, following the implementation of Oplan Tokhang, or Toktok, Hangyo (Knock, Urge) in July 1, about 2,600 Valenzuela residents involved in illegal drugs have turned themselves in. According to the officer, this is the highest number of surrenderees in Metropolitan Manila.
The program ended with a dance number featuring mascots Kapitan VADAC, SPO1 Valenzuela, the city’s ambassador of goodwill and enforcer of change, PO1 Fatima, the local police’s campaign symbol against illegal drugs. A puppet show was also presented by the Philippine National Police (PNP) Police Community Relations Group (PCRG) featuring PO1 Bato and “Tatay Digong and Da Adiks,” the puppet representations of PNP Chief Ronald de la Rosa and President Rodrigo Duterte.