Published on: June 27, 2023 | Written By: Ronie Jade Biosada

The 2023 International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking (IDADAIT) with the theme “People first: stop stigma and discrimination, strengthen prevention” was commemorated with great success on June 26th by the dedicated employees of the Regional Office of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) IX. A remarkable Pledge of Commitment was held during the flag raising participated by all regional office personnel and the second part took place at the Executive Function Hall located within the City Hall of Pagadian City, where a concise yet impactful program unfolded, inviting the active participation of the 54 barangays in Pagadian City as esteemed participants.

In the morning, as part of the commemoration of the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking (IDADAIT), the office organized a distinct activity that aimed to reinforce the significance of the event.

During the Flag Raising Ceremony, the attendees were invited to partake in a solemn Pledge of Commitment. This pledge encompassed a resolute promise to actively engage in the BIDA program, which stands as a comprehensive approach to drug prevention, and to contribute their unwavering efforts towards achieving a Drug-free Philippines. The Pledge of Commitment served as a powerful and symbolic gesture, reinforcing the shared responsibility and dedication required from every individual to effectively address the drug problem. It further instilled a sense of accountability and determination among the participants, fostering a collective spirit of cooperation and commitment towards a common cause.

In addition, the posting of official IDADAIT poster and theme, strategically positioned in front of the office was done to attract attention and effectively communicate the core message of the occasion. The poster served as a visual reminder of the overarching goal to combat drug abuse and illicit drug trafficking. By prominently displaying the poster, the office aimed to stimulate awareness and ignite conversations around the critical issues at hand.

The office remains steadfast in its mission to combat drug abuse, advocate for prevention strategies, and promote holistic approaches that involve all stakeholders. The IDADAIT activities conducted in the morning successfully set the tone for the day’s events and invigorated the participants with a renewed sense of purpose and determination in the ongoing fight against drug abuse and illicit drug trafficking.

In the afternoon, second part of the 2023 IDADAIT celebration was successfully held at the Executive Function Hall in the City Hall of Pagadian City. The event aimed to raise awareness about drug abuse and illicit drug trafficking, promote prevention strategies, combat stigma and discrimination, and foster cooperation among participants.

These are the highlights of the activity:


Participants were warmly welcomed, and their attendance was registered by the dedicated secretariat team. This ensured smooth entry and participation in the event. The event commenced with a moment of prayer, setting a reflective and solemn atmosphere followed by the Philippine National Anthem and Pagadian City Hymn.

Acknowledgement of Guests and Participants

Jose Ruel D. Trobanos, the LGMED Chief of DILG IX, expressed gratitude and recognized the distinguished guests and participants for their presence and support. This includes the Punong Barangays, functionaries, Sangguninang Barangay Members of the 54 barangays of Pagadian City.

Messages and Key Note Address

Vice Mayor Atty. Baldomero Fernandez delivered a warm welcome message on behalf of City Mayor Samuel S. Co, emphasizing the importance of the IDADAIT celebration and the collective effort required to combat drug abuse.

Keynote Address by Secretary Catalino S. Cuy, Chairman of the Dangerous Drugs Board. He emphasized the rationale behind the 2023 IDADAIT celebration and delivered an impactful message, stressing the need for concerted action to address drug abuse and illicit drug trafficking. Mentioning the flagship program of the department in combatting the mis-use of illegal drugs, the Buhay Ingatan, Droga’y Ayawan (BIDA) Program.

Further, to raise awareness about the harmful effects of drug addiction, promote a drug-free lifestyle, emphasize the importance of safeguarding one’s well-being, and highlight the significance of a whole-of-nation approach in combating the misuse of illegal drugs, the “Buhay Ingatan, Droga’y Ayawan” audio-visual presentation was presented. A visually engaging audio-visual presentation showcased the BIDA Program, highlighting its initiatives and contributions to drug addiction prevention.

Forum on Preventing Drug Addiction and its Harmful Effects

Mary Jane Bernabe Mohammad-Sali, DMO IV of DOH IX, led an informative and engaging forum on preventing drug addiction and the detrimental effects of illicit drugs. The discussion provided valuable insights into the risks associated with drug abuse and offered evidence-based preventive measures. The discussion lasted for an hour.

Participants actively engaged in an open forum, where they had the opportunity to ask questions and share their thoughts on drug abuse and related issues. The emcee facilitated the discussion, encouraging active participation and stimulating meaningful dialogue.

The event concluded on a lively note with a vibrant Zumba Dance Show, promoting physical fitness and a healthy lifestyle while showcasing unity and enjoyment among participants.

In conclusion, the 2023 IDADAIT celebration in Pagadian City was a resounding success, with active participation from the employees of the DILG Regional Office IX and the esteemed representatives from the 54 barangays. The event effectively raised awareness, promoted prevention strategies, combated stigma and discrimination, and fostered cooperation in the fight against drug abuse and illicit drug trafficking. It served as a testament to the collective commitment and determination of the participants to create a drug-free society, ensuring a brighter and safer future for all.