ALARMED by the recent spate of drug-related killings, Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle has proposed a Church-sponsored multi-sectoral dialogue that would come up with a united response to the illegal drugs problem without reducing it into a political or criminal issue.
In a letter read on Sunday in all Churches in the Archdiocese of Manila, Tagle said that the there was no debate that the drug menace was real and destructive but stressed that given the complexity of the issues, “no single individual, group or institution could claim to have the only right response.”
“We need one other. We cannot disregard each other. Let us invite families, national government agencies, local government units, people’s organizations, schools, faith-based communities, the medical profession, the police and military, recovering addicts etc. to come together, listen to each other and chart a common path,” the Cardinal said.
“The illegal drug problem should not be reduced to a political or criminal issue. It is a humanitarian concern that affects all of us. The Archdiocese of Manila would be willing to host such multi-sectoral dialogue,” he added.
He also called on the families of victims in the war on drugs, especially the innocent, and those who have recovered to come out and tell their stories so that everybody would be able to better understand the situation and not just rely on statistics.
Tagle, likewise, appealed to manufacturers and pushers of illegal drugs, as well as to people behind the series of killings, extra-judicial or otherwise, to stop now.