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KOTA KINABALU – Special committee set up by KK Archdiocesan Human Development joined in the fight against drugs recently.
The Campaign of Empowering Community, Family and Society through its programme Family on Alert ‘The Shields’ was held in Kg Kopungit here on 25-26 Mar 2017. The purpose of the campaign is to raise awareness amongst the civilians especially families, on dangers of drug addiction.
It is a pilot project jointly organised by Kopungit community, Agensi Anti-Dadah Kebangsaan (AADK) and KK Archdiocesan Human Development Commission (AHDC).
Dominic Lim, AHDC’s coordinator, said the commission has set up a special committee called Komiti Anti-Dadah dan Alkohol or in short, KADA (Anti-Drugs and Alcohol Committee), to support the government’s effort in handling drug addictions.
“As a body set up under the Catholic Church, AHDC’s main purpose is to promote and champion human dignity. AHDC believes that each human being is a dignified creation in the image of God,” Lim said.
He added, “Therefore, if a person is trapped, afflicted, exploited or enslaved by anything evil such as drugs, his dignity is affected. For this reason, he is to be assisted, freed and saved from this slavery.”
Datuk Joannes Solidau, DBKK’s Director-General, was present at the closing ceremony and delivered Mayor Datuk Yeoh Boon Hai’s speech.
“If we compare the statistics of drug addictions in Malaysia, 20,887 people were recorded in 2013, 21,777 people in 2014 and 26,668 people in 2015 and this was made through arresting and voluntary entrance,” said Yeoh.
Yeoh continued, “The rise in the statistics has urged the launching of ‘“‘Kempen Perangi Dadah habis-habisan 2016’ (Fight Against Drugs 2016 Campaign) by Deputy Prime Minister cum Minister of Home Affairs. Sabah government through AADK has taken its aggressive move in fighting against drugs through elements of prevention, treatment and rehabilitation and enforcement.”
During ‘The Shields’ programme in Kg Kopungit, activities carried out were family sports, exhibitions, talks, and sharing by an ex-addict.
In her talk, AADK Officer Amy Clare Freddy said that this was the first AADK programme within the church institution.
“Drugs do not identify with status whether you are rich or poor. Drug dealers’ main target are the teenagers and children aged 12 years and above because they are the most vulnerable,” Freddy said.
She added, “The main cause of use of drugs is influenced by friends, followed by their own curiosity. Prevention starts at home within the family.”
Also present was an ex-addict, Andy, 24, a Catholic. He admitted the fact that everything started at home.
“It’s been three years since I last touched any drugs.I started taking drugs since I was a teenager. Before that, I didn’t even know how to drink alcohol. How I got into this was because I didn’t get the attention that I craved for from my parents. I didn’t have anyone to talk to and to share. I started to go out and found friends among the drug addicts,” he said.
KADA offers pastoral support “After Care” in the effort to help integrating clients back into the family, church and society after they are out of the rehabilitation center.– Linda Edward