90 PUV drivers, conductors in Koronadal negative for narcotics

GENERAL SANTOS CITY -- At least 90 drivers and conductors of public utility vehicles (PUVs) in Koronadal City have tested negative for illegal drugs during the surprise drug tests conducted by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) 12 (Soccsksargen) on Tuesday.

Naravy Duquiatan, PDEA-12 director, said Wednesday the random drug tests were part of the two-day "Oplan Huli Week", which was launched in transport terminals, Makar port, and at the city airport here.

Duquiatan said the second round of drug tests was conducted at the Koronadal City Integrated Transport Terminal in coordination with the city police, Land Transportation Office, and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB).

The tested individuals consisted of drivers and conductors of passenger buses, vans, and other PUVs through urine samples, which were later processed at the PDEA-12 laboratory here, she said.  

"The result was very encouraging as none of them tested positive for using dangerous drugs," the PDEA-12 official said in an interview.

During the initial testing at the Bulaong city terminal here, a passenger bus driver yielded a positive result for use of shabu.
For the two-day surprise drug tests, PDEA-12 covered a total of 322 PUV drivers, conductors, and dispatchers.

Aside from the tests, Duquiatan said they distributed information and education campaign materials against the use of illegal drugs to passengers at the transport terminals.

She said their K9 and interdiction units also conducted a random inspection of vehicles and baggage at the public terminals, Makar port, and the city airport.

"This is to prevent criminals, especially drug traffickers, from taking advantage of the influx of passengers due to the Holy Week and use the city as exit and entry points for illegal drugs," she added. (PNA)

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