Palace welcomes mandatory drug testing for all gov’t workers

Mara Cepeda
Palace welcomes mandatory drug testing for all gov’t workers
Malacañang says a drug test on government employees is a 'very powerful symbolic act' on the part of the new administration

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang on Saturday, July 9, welcomed calls for all government employees to undergo mandatory drug testing.

Responding to questions in an interview on dzRB, Presidential Spokesman Ernesto Abella said this would “prove” that the bureaucracy is manned by people of sound mind and body.

“It’s a very powerful symbolic act,” said Abella.

He said through the effort, the Duterte administration would “show that the people working in government are good people and they are people worthy of our trust.”

Kasi ‘yun naman talaga ang priority ng Presidente na maisoli ‘yung trust and faith in the government (That really is the priority of our President – that the trust and faith in the government are restored),” he said.

The Philippine National Police (PNP) has conducted surprise drug tests among its men on the first full day of the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte, who campaigned on a platform of fighting illegal drugs and crime.

Eleven cops have since tested positive for illegal drugs. PNP chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa said the samples obtained from the policemen will undergo confirmatory testing. Once validated, the police officials will be charged and tried.

Duterte had also said he wants mandatory drug testing for security guards and public utility vehicle drivers. –

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Mara Cepeda

Mara Cepeda specializes in stories about politics and local governance. She covers the Office of the Vice President, the Senate, and the Philippine opposition. She is a 2021 fellow of the Asia Journalism Fellowship and the Reham al-Farra Memorial Journalism Fellowship of the UN. Got tips? Email her at or tweet @maracepeda.