CITY of San Fernando, Pampanga -- Acting Gov. Dennis “Delta” Pineda, five provincial board members, department heads and 285 capitol employees have tested negative for dangerous drugs prohibited under Republic Act 9165, the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) said.
“Screening exam conducted on specimens PDEA-RO3-RDT016-PC001-300 gave negative result for the presence of methamphetamine, THC, MDMA, cocaine and other metabolites,” PDEA chemist John Patrick V. dela Cruz said in a five-page report.
Methamphetamine is also known as shabu. THC is tetrahydrocannabinol, the active ingredient in marijuana. MDMA is 3,4-methylenedioxymeth-amphetamine, also known as Ecstasy.
Dela Cruz said their urine samples “do not contain any dangerous drugs under RA 9165” or the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002.
The findings were certified by Virmary G. Berango, chief of the PDEA Central Luzon Laboratory section, who swore to Atty. Rominagrace A. Yadao for the veracity of the report.
The random drug tests were supervised by Director Emerson Margate, PDEA chief in Central Luzon, last Nov. 14 at the Capitol's Executive House.
“The Pampanga provincial government was the first provincial government in the region to request for an unannounced drug test among capitol leaders and personnel,” Margate said.
Pineda said random drug tests aim to help achieve a drug-free work place. Some 1,700 capitol employees would undergo drug tests in the coming weeks to be able to declare the capitol fully drug-free.
“I hope local governments would request PDEA to also conduct random tests among their leaders and employees,” the acting governor said.
Making and maintaining drug-free places in government and private establishments are part of the Dalan ning Pamagbayu (Road to Change), a comprehensive program that stops the proliferation and use of illegal drugs, helps dependents leave the addiction and develop productive lives, and involves volunteers in making communities peaceful, orderly and prepared for disasters.
Aside from Pineda, Board Members Benny Jocson (first district), Olga Frances Dizon (second district), Atty. Ananias Canlas Jr. (third district), Nelson Calara and Rolando Balingit (fourth district) also tested negative for illegal drugs.
So did Provincial Administrator Andres Pangilinan Jr. and Pineda’s chief of staff, Atty. Charlie Chua.