PDEA bats for mandatory, surprise drug test for electoral candidates

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MANILA (October 19) – If the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) can have its way, all politicians running in the midterm election will have to go through a mandatory and surprise drug test.

PDEA director general Aaron Aquino said the surprise drug tests would prevent the candidates from preparing for the test and coming out clean, when in fact, they could be using illegal drugs.

“It could be similar to what we are doing in the agency when fellow officers are called for a supposed meeting and when they arrive, the room will be padlocked,” Aquino said.

Malacañang, however, rejected the proposal.  Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said surprise drug tests or even mandatory drug tests would violate the Constitution.  “It should be voluntary on the part of the candidates, that is a more favorable process,” he added.

“Mandatory drug testing for Senate and House of Representatives candidates is violative of the Constitution as it adds another qualification outside of that enumerated by the Constitution,” Panelo said in a statement.

Earlier, the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB) pushed for a mandatory drug test on government officials once they get elected.  DDB chairperson Catalino Cuy said the regulation will provide for the establishment and institutionalization of drug-free workplace policy in all government offices. – Jiann Padillo/ NewsLine

 

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