MANILA, Philippines — Senators Manny Pacquiao and Christopher ‘Bong’ Go said they are willing to undergo drug tests following President Rodrigo Duterte’s claim that one presidential candidate was a cocaine user.
“We have a candidate using cocaine,” Duterte said during a speech held in Oriental Mindoro province.
“He is a very weak leader,” Duterte said about the unnamed candidate.
“He might win hands down. If that is what the Filipino wants, go ahead,” he added.
In a message sent to reporters, Pacquiao said undergoing drug testing among all government officials must be mandatory.
“Mandatory drug test must be required for anyone who wants to work in government, elective or appointed,” Pacquiao said.
He vowed that should he win the elections, he will make drug testing a requirement in his administration without prejudice to those who have already gone rehabilitation have turned their back on the illegal vice.
Pacquiao also encouraged other candidates to be open to the idea and have themselves tested for drug use.
“Although I’m not in a position to judge anyone on this issue, I am willing to undergo drug test anytime and anywhere. Sana ganyan din ang ating mga kapwa kandidato. Mas maganda kung hair follicle test para mas sigurado,” Pacquiao said.
Meanwhile, Senator Bong Go reiterated that, even if it is not required by law, he is willing to get tested anytime, anywhere.
“Katulad ng sinabi ko noon, kung ako ang tatanungin at kung ‘yan ang gusto ng taumbayan — anytime, anywhere ay willing naman ako magpa-drug test,” Go said.
“Ito ay para maipakita natin sa mga botante na fit for public service ang mga tumatakbo,” he added.
Go also underscored upholding the rights of Filipinos to be ensured that candidates have a clean lifestyle to be able to lead the nation.
“Karapatan ng mga mamamayang Pilipino malaman na malinis ang mga kandidato bago sila pumili ng mga mamumuno sa kanila. Wala dapat tinatago para makapili ng tama ang taumbayan,” he emphasized. —/mbmf