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PDEA, students think testing college athletes for drug use is a good idea

March 7, 2013 3:53am

The Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency would like to see more college athletes drug tested after two Far Eastern University basketball players, who were foreign nationals, were caught by police officers smoking marijuana.

[Related: 2 FEU Tamaraws nabbed for drug possession]

However, according to a report by Saleema Refran on GMA News TV's “State of the Nation with Jessica Soho”, the drug testing would be strictly voluntary as this is what the the law allows for.

“Yung universities mismo ang mag voluntary submit doon sa mga players,” said PDEA-NCR director Wilkins Villanueva. “In short, yung player ang mag vo-voluntary.”

By volunteering, Villanueva explained, the player would prove “na wala naman akong [the player] tinatago.”

College athlete Albrecht Arevalo sees nothing wrong with voluntarily submitting himself to a drug test. “Nire-represent namin ang school namin. So may values kami dapat na pinapakita.”

It is a sentiment shared by other students.

“As players, they should act as role models sa mga kabataan tulad ko,” said an unidentified female student. “So, sa akin po, tama lang mag undergo sila ng drug testing.”

But UP Maroons coach Ricky Dandan believed that the drug-use issue is more complicated than discovering who has partaken and who has stayed sober.

“Ano ang magiging policy if someone is found positive,” asked Dandan.

He points out that the response to a positive drug result should be the main focus as college athletes are young men and women.

“If a very young kid is caught positive, what do you do? Will you bring him to rehab? Will you kick him out of school?” Dandan asked.

Dismissed

Meanwhile, FEU said that it will see to it that the two athletes caught using marijuana would be meted out the proper penalties.

“The policy of FEU on drug matters is: if our security catches the students, then there's a process,” said FEU president Dr. Michael Alba. If after the process the student is found guilty, the student can be “dismissed.”

As for drug testing, Alba clarified that investigations by institutions external to the university were outside their purview. And regardless of these investigations, the university would carry out its own probe.

GMA News was unable to get in touch the two foreign basketball players for their comments as FEU refused to provide access. — DVM, GMA News




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