• Manila village officials to undergo drug tests

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    Mayor Joseph “Erap” Estrada will require all barangay (village) officials to undergo drug tests.

    Estrada announced his decision to have village officials tested for drugs Sunday, two days after a village chairman was killed in an anti-drug operation in Quiapo district.

    Through a series of drug tests, the mayor hopes to discover who among the local officials are using illegal drugs. He warned that those found positive for drugs face criminal and administrative charges and will be dismissed from their posts.

    Estrada said using drugs is “a betrayal of public trust.”

    “People elected them (barangay officials). Do you think they are worthy of their positions if they’re drug addicts?” he asked.

    He asked village officials not to take offense with his order that they take mandatory drug tests because he also underwent the same tests.

    Estrada and Vice Mayor Honey Lacuna-Pangan, as well as the members of the Sangguniang Panglunsod underwent a surprise drug test on August 18. All of them were found negative of drug use.

    On Friday, barangay captain Faiz Macabato was shot dead when he and six others engaged policemen in a shootout.

    National Capital Region Police Office acting director Chief Supt. Oscar Albayalde said the barangay official and his men put up a fight when police operatives swooped down on the barangay hall to get Macabato’s brother.

    Estrada had said that Macabato protected his brother because he refused to submit a list of drug users and pushers in his barangay.

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