Calapan City, Oriental Mindoro - With the full support of Acting Regional Manager Ronilio M. Cervantes, the NIA MIMAROPA Regional Office and the Mindoro Oriental-Marinduque-Romblon Irrigation Management Office declared themselves as a drug-free workplace through the unveiling of a drug-free workplace marker on January 29, 2024, at Bayanan II, Calapan City, Oriental Mindoro.

The conduct of the said activity is pursuant to Dangerous Drugs Board Regulation No. 13, Series of 2018, titled “Establishment and institutionalization of drug-free workplace policies in all government offices, including the conduct of authorized drug testing for elective local officials and appointive public officers and other purposes,” and NIA Memorandum Circular No. 126, s. 2023, entitled Amendment to NIA MC No. 68, s. 2016, “Policies and Guidelines in Formulating and Implementing a Comprehensive Drug-Free Workplace Program under the pertinent provisions of RA No. 9165, otherwise known as the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2022, the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB) Regulation No. 2 S. 2004, the Civil Service Commission (CSC) Resolution No. 101359, CSC MC No. 13, S. 2010, and the NIA MIMAROPA Drug-Free Workplace Committee Resolution No. 02, Series of 2024, entitled “A Resolution Declaring the NIA MIMAROPA Regional Office as a Drug-Free Workplace.”

In a message from Acting Regional Manager Cervantes, read by Administrative and Finance Division Manager Kirsty Caroline M. Hernandez-Aceron, he emphasized the milestone of achieving a drug-free workplace environment. Acknowledging the dangers of substance abuse to health, productivity, and safety, the message highlighted the agency's dedication to education, prevention, and enforcement efforts. The marker symbolizes the commitment to integrity, professionalism, and responsibility, with a call for ongoing vigilance and support for those in need. The message concluded with gratitude to all involved and a vision for a brighter, safer future through collective effort.

Administrative and Finance Division Manager Hernandez-Aceron acknowledged the participants and highlighted the significance of the marker, emphasizing that it symbolizes NIA MIMAROPA's commitment to promoting a safe working environment and providing safe space for every employee specially all women. She noted that all employees of the MIMAROPA Regional Office and MOMARO IMO tested negative for dangerous drugs, demonstrating the agency's dedication to supporting PDEA in its fight against dangerous drugs use and abuse. AFD Manager Hernandez-Aceron encouraged participants to value and not waste their precious human life. She emphasized that employees improved physical and mental health free from the influence of dangerous drugs are crucial to deliver efficient and effective irrigation services to NIA MIMAROPA’S farmer- beneficiaries.

PDEA MIMAROPA Regional Director, Director III Christian O. Frivaldo, commended NIA MIMAROPA for achieving a drug-free workplace. He lauded the dedication of Regional Manager Engr. Cervantes and MOMARO IMO Division Manager Engr. Gerardo R. Perez, emphasizing their concern for employees’ well-being. Director Frivaldo urged continued vigilance and support for a drug-free environment, stressing its importance for societal welfare.

The event was also graced by PDEA MIMAROPA Assistant Regional Director, Director II Donelyn M. Hemedez, NIA MIMAROPA Resident Lawyer, Atty. Norileisha Atienza, Baco-Bucayao River Irrigation System (RIS) Head, Engr. Maria Victoria O. Malenab, Marinduque Provincial Irrigation Officer-in-Charge, Engr. Daniel Angelo Malabanan, and Romblon Provincial Officer-in-Charge, Engr. Leonora C. Calusin, as well as Section Chiefs and Unit Heads of NIA MIMAROPA Regional Office and MOMARO IMO. Employees from NIA MIMAROPA Regional Office and MOMARO IMO, along with PDEA MIMAROPA representatives, also witnessed the event.