Court orders drugtests-A A +A
Thursday, October 24, 2013
HUNDREDS of applicants for driver's licenses yesterday complained about being made to undergo drug tests and pay P500 by the Land Transportation Office (LTO).
They said mandatory drug testing has been abolished under Section 19 of Republic Act 10586, which was signed into law by President Benigno Aquino III last June.
But in a press conference yesterday, LTO 7 Director Arnel Tancinco said they were only following the order of Judge Hermes Montero of the Toledo City Regional Trial Court (RTC), who issued a writ of preliminary injunction against the abolition of mandatory drug testing.
Montero granted the petition of Dulcisimo Tuldanes of Toledo City, who sought to nullify the June 27, 2013 memorandum of LTO Chief Virginia Torres.
Tancinco said that because of the court order, Central Visayas is the only LTO office that still requires drug testing for applicants of driver’s license.
Lawyer Clarence Paul Oaminal, former vice chairman of the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB), said Torres’ memorandum is based on a law.
“The issuance of the writ has the effect of declaring the law (Anti-Drunk-driving and Drugged Act of 2013) as unconstitutional,” Oaminal said.
“Congress has repealed the law that mandates drug test as requirement for driver's license. There is no constitutional right that mandates drug test. So what right is the court protecting? The Solicitor General should protect and defend the validity of the law," he added.
Richard Corominas, president of the Cebu Provincial Bus Operators Association, and Julie Flores, president of the Cebu South Mini Bus Operators Association, had objected to the mandatory drug test.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on October 24, 2013.