Rama:Drug-free City Hall doable
CEBU, Philippines — Cebu City Vice Mayor Michael Rama believes that a drug-free City Hall is achievable with the continuing drug screening being undertaken by the City Office for Substance Abuse and Prevention (COSAP).
Rama, who was tagged as drug protector by President Rodrigo Duterte, said he is fully supporting the initiative of COSAP.
“I don’t think it’s a problem in going into that being drug-free. Anyone who would want to be assured with a living will definitely be concerned of not being tested positive. Otherwise, you will lose job then you lose earnings and that will affect your family,” Rama said.
COSAP has been conducting a series of surprise drug test among City Hall workers since November 8, 2019.
“That drug testing is a very good element because especially wala man ta ka pre-employment drug testing,” said Rama.
He explained that drug testing is allowed by the Supreme Court for pre-employment purposes.
“It is just unfortunate sa atoa that we had hiring but we were not able to have drug testing for pre-employment,” said Rama.
To date, there are already 57 City Hall workers who have tested positive for illegal drug use. The results, however, are still subject to confirmatory test that will take 30 days.
“But, I’m pretty sure the confirmatory will definitely yield only few… not as many as five percent,” Rama said.
COSAP vowed to continue with the surprise drug tests among City Hall employees to make sure that the city government is drug-free, and to support the anti-drug campaign of the president.
Rama, however, has cautioned COSAP to exercise prudence in releasing the results of the drug test. He said it is important to wait for the result of the confirmatory test before releasing any information to the public.
“Kana bang when you really do some testing, that it will definitely yield the true result. Because kung dili true result gud after confirmatory nya imo nang gi-announce kinsa na sila, damage has already been done. That’s not fair,” said Rama.
“That has to be done carefully because being into stigma is not easy. Mao nang importante kaayo na matter on drug testing has to be handled with caution and with utmost care,” he added. FPL (FREEMAN)