Being true to his personal brand of being a role model, Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Eduardo M. Año led the 1,000-strong personnel of the Department’s Central Office in the ongoing conduct of mandatory drug testing at the DILG-NAPOLCOM Center on Tuesday, December 4.
“As the head of the DILG which is one of the lead agencies in the anti-illegal drugs campaign of President Duterte, I would like to set an example by being among the first few who will undergo the mandatory drug test for all DILG personnel,” Año said.
“No one is exempted from this drug testing in the Department, not even the officials. We want to send a message that we ourselves are drug-free and we are ready to lead the anti-illegal drugs fight until the end,” he added.
Faithfully following the good leader, DILG Undersecretary for Operations Epimaco V. Densing III, Undersecretary for Public Safety Nestor F. Quinsay, and Assistant Secretary for External and Legislative Affairs Ricojudge Janvier M. Echiverri also underwent the mandatory drug testing procedures.
This is the third time since 2016 that the Department’s Central Office has conducted the annual mandatory drug testing procedures as part of the national government’s unwavering quest against illegal drugs. Año said that the yearly mandatory drug testing covers all DILG local government sector officials and employees including personnel under job order and contract of service status.
The DILG Chief added that it is also part of the Department’s initial requirement for entry to government service for appointive officials and employees.
Earlier this year, the DILG Secretary announced the adoption of a “one-strike policy” for officials and employees who are found positive on the use of illegal drugs.
In the event that a DILG official or employee yields positive test results, he or she shall be given 15 days upon receipt of notice to challenge the result of the confirmatory test. In case of failure of the concerned employee to challenge the said test results within the prescribed period, he or she shall be subjected to appropriate sanctions.
“Those personnel who yields positive drug testing results shall be charged with grave misconduct and be sanctioned with dismissal from service on the first offense,” Año said.
As such, the positive drug test result shall be attached to the 201 files of the concerned DILG official or employee in a strictly confidential manner.
Per Circular 2018-22, the DILG’s one-strike policy on mandatory drug testing is pursuant to Republic Act (RA) No. 9165 otherwise known as the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002, Civil Service Commission (CSC) Memorandum Circular (MC) No. 13, s. of 2017, and Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB) Regulations No. 2 s. of 2017.