ANOTHER batch of Cebu City Hall employees tested positive for illegal drugs during random drug tests by the Cebu City Office for Substance Abuse Prevention (Cosap).

For this month alone, Cosap Chief Alice Utlang said, 18 employees have tested positive.

So far, 33 Cebu City Hall workers have been with illegal drugs in their system since Cosap started their operations this year. Of the 33, two are regular while the rest are casual and job-order employees.

“For Cosap, this is really alarming compared to the number of those those that tested positive last year. City Hall employees should serve as role models to the public and not be drug users,” she said.

In 2014, Cosap found 15 workers who tested positive in random tests from January to December.

This year, Cosap has administered the test to 625 employees from 28 offices and departments of City Hall.

“Out of the 625 employees, 33 were positive, which is five percent of the total employees who submitted themselves to the random exam,” Utlang said.

Last Friday, one of the 10 employees randomly picked from the City Traffic Operations Management and City Legal Office tested positive.

Another surprise test was also conducted in Barangay Cambinocot last week.

All 42 barangay workers who were required to submit themselves to the exam were cleared.

However, two workers earlier admitted to Cambinot Barangay Captain Rey Lauron that they have been drug users and refused to submit to the test.

For barangays, Utlang said, it will be up to the captain to decide how to handle their workers; the City’s policy states that the services of casual and job-order employees will be terminated once they test positive.

“We will determine why there is an increase in the positive results this year. We are worried because last year, all those that tested positive were males but this year, we recorded two females already,” Utlang said.

Utlang said she already submitted a report to Mayor Michael Rama and recommended possible additional actions that the City might take to lessen the number of those who use illegal drugs.