113 soldiers test positive for drug use

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 20 2014 07:11 PM | Updated as of Jan 21 2014 03:11 AM

MANILA -- A random drug test conducted last year revealed that 113 soldiers tested positive for drug use, the military reported Monday.

AFP public affairs office chief Lt. Col. Ramon Zagala said the soldiers are now being subjected to further investigation, preparatory to their possible dismissal from the service.

"They are undergoing investigation, they are given due process. If proven guilty, they will be discharged," Zagala said in an interview in Camp Aguinaldo.

Of the 113 soldiers positive for drug use, 70 are assigned with the Army; 18 with the Navy; 13 with the general headquarters, unified commands and AFP-wide service support units; and 12 are from the Air Force.

Citing figures from the military's anti-drugs "Task Force Moses," Zagala said at least 20,000 officers and men were subjected to the random drug test last year.

Compared to last year, the task force will increase by 20 percent the number of military personnel to be subjected to random drug test this year, Zagala said.

"TF (Task Force) Moses, in its effort to reach a wider audience and to deliver a more effective campaign, is stepping up its information drive for a healthier, stronger and drug-free AFP," he said.

Zagala also disclosed that the task force has invested on the training of its personnel "for better and more accurate results in drug testing."

Zagala said the military will continue with its random drug test for erring soldiers "to set an example to our citizens against the use of illegal drugs."

"As protector of the people, we should always be in our best physical, mental, and psychological condition in order to fully serve our responsibilities," he said.