PDEA pushes drug test for college freshmen

By Charlie Lagasca, The Philippine Star

Posted at Mar 22 2014 10:37 AM | Updated as of Mar 22 2014 06:38 PM

BAYOMBONG, Nueva Vizcaya, Philippines – The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) is pushing for drug testing as requirement for all incoming college students.

Lawyer Sherwin Closa, PDEA Cagayan Valley director, said as far as they are concerned, incoming college freshmen should first secure a clearance from their agency before they are allowed to enroll.

“The issuance of clearances to incoming college students would ensure that students entering colleges and universities in the country are drug-free,” Closa said during the recent Regional Peace and Order Council (RPOC) meeting in Cauayan City.

Closa, however, admitted that such a measure would need congressional approval before it becomes mandatory for all incoming college students to undergo drug testing and issued with PDEA clearances as a prerequisite for entering college.

“We understand that the proposal has to undergo legislative processes. But we hope that such a move will be supported by the members of Congress,” he said.

Earlier, the RPOC and the Regional Development Council issued a joint resolution for the conduct of random drug tests among secondary and tertiary students in the region amid reports of increasing cases of youths engaging in illegal drugs.

The resolution sought the assistance of the Department of Education and the Commission on Higher Education for the implementation of a region-wide random drug testing.

“Random drug testing will help eliminate illegal drug use among the youth and will ensure all educational centers to achieve an illegal drug-free learning environment,” the resolution read.