Drug testing teams to carry out nationwide tests for PNP
by T. Villavert
Manila (3 February) -- The National Police Commission will form drug testing teams to carry out the random tests nationwide as part of the sustained efforts of the Arroyo administration to win the war against illegal drugs.
This was disclosed by DILG Secretary Ronaldo Puno who also chairs the National Police Commission, stressing said the government will conduct random drug tests on uniformed personnel of the Philippine National Police (PNP) and warned that those found to be drug users would be dismissed outright from the service.
According to the DILG pres report, the NAPOLCOM will be issuing a resolution in the next few days spelling out a one-strike policy against police officers who fail to wipe out illegal drugs in their respective areas of jurisdiction.
This new policy and random drug testing will cover all uniformed personnel of the PNP, including those in the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) and the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP), Puno said in a press briefing at Camp Crame, the DILG press report disclosed
Secretary Puno said the one-strike policy will be applied if the chief of police fails to lead anti-illegal drugs operations in their respective areas of jurisdiction or ignores adverse reports about the presence of drug dens or laboratories or the widespread use of illegal drugs.
Moreover, the refusal to undergo drug tests will be construed as insubordination on the part of any member of the PNP, Puno said.
"Before we can teach others to be drug free, we must ourselves first be drug free," Puno said during the celebration of the PNP's 18th anniversary at the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) in Taguig City. "So I call on the officers and men of the PNP to be examples in this crusade. We are going to stop this scourge and we are going to begin with ourselves.
Puno also warned local chief executives that they could face administrative and criminal charges should they be found negligent or remiss in their duties in the all-out campaign against illegal drugs in their respective communities.
He issued the warning as he reminded them of their duty under the law to allocate a substantial portion of their annual budgets to help win the war against this scourge, the DILG press report disclosed. (PIA 6) [top]