TV networks urged to conduct mandatory, surprise drug test to celebs
MANILA, Philippines — Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) Director General Aaron Aquino on Thursday urged local television networks to conduct mandatory and surprise drug test to its artists.
This came after Aquino revealed that 31 celebrities are included in PDEA’s drugs watch list.
“‘Yung Channel 2, Channel 7, Channel 5, o kung ano mang channel, may mga artista ‘yan. Dapat gumawa na sila ng initiative na ‘yung artista nila eh ipa-drug test nila. It should be a mandatory and surprise drug test,” he said in an interview with CNN Philippines.
(Channel 2, Channel 7, and Channel 5, or whatever channel, they have actors. They should already make an initiative to have their artists undergo drug test. It should be a mandatory and surprise drug test.)
According to Aquino, his call to television networks is similar to the internal cleansing program being implemented in PDEA and in the Philippine National Police (PNP).
“Sana itong mga artista magkaroon ng internal cleansing din (I hope these artists will have internal cleansing, too),” he said.
“Anyway, confidential naman mga results nyan eh, hindi nyo naman ibabandera. Hindi nyo naman sasabihin yan (Anyway, the result of those will be confidential. You won’t reveal it). It will remain confidential,” Aquino added.
He then offered PDEA’s assistance should television networks initiate a mandatory or surprise drug test to its artists. He even said PDEA could provide them testing kits.
“The PDEA can be there para i-assist kayo at to provide the testing kits para (to assist you and provide testing kits so) once and for all malinis ‘yung inyong industriya at mga celebrity (your industry and celebrities will be cleansed),” the PDEA chief said.
Aquino earlier revealed 20 actors and 11 actresses – tagged as drug users and pushers – are in their watch list. He said most of them are in their 20s to 30s, while some are in their 40s or 50s.
But Aquino said the 31 artists are only those being monitored by PDEA and excludes those in the separate watch lists of PNP, the National Intelligence Coordinating Agency, National Bureau of Investigation, and Armed Forces of the Philippines.
“So baka umabot sa mahigit 100 iyan ‘pag combined namin lahat ng watch lists namin (So that figure might go beyond 100 if we combine all our watch lists),” he said.
The PDEA chief also said most of the celebrities in their list use ecstasy and “shabu” while some are into marijuana, and at least five are taking cocaine. He added that even those who used illegal drugs at least once were also included in the list.
But asked if they will release the names of celebrities suspected of being involved in drugs, Aquino, who was also against the announcement of politicians’ names in the so-called “narcolist,” categorically said “no.”
“Pero huhulihin namin sila (But we will catch them). Time will come; we will just catch on you. We will catch on you,” he warned. /kga
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