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Lagman lauds Duterte decision to give Robredo ‘free rein’ in drugs committee

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Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman on Tuesday praised the statement of President Rodrigo Duterte that Vice President Leni Robredo has “free rein” as co-chair of the Inter-Agency Committee on Anti-Illegal Drugs (ICAD) and that he “will give her all that she needs,” including funding support.

Lagman said the decision of the President “is most welcome.”

“The new role of Robredo as the head of the anti-illegal drugs campaign would necessitate additional modest allocations to augment the appropriations of the Office of the Vice President,” said Lagman, a member of Robredo’s Liberal Party.

“These fresh funds can be used by the Vice President in re-charting the course of the anti-narcotics drive to non-violent policies like community-based drug rehabilitation and poverty alleviation programs,” he said.

Moreover, according to Lagman, the implementing agencies which are members of the ICAD, like the Philippine National Police (PNP), Department of Health (DOH), Department of Education (DepEd), Department of Justice (DOJ), and Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), should have their anti-illegal drug budgets realigned to support the innovative initiatives of the Vice President.

“The reallocation of funds will also enhance data gathering and evidence-based approach in documenting the actual incidence of narcotics trade and drug use,” he said.