ILLEGAL DRUGS:Samia orders dealers to stop

PRESIDENT Samia Suluhu Hassan on Sunday ordered drug barons to shun the business in pursuit of saving young people from slipping into abuse.

Dr Samia, who was speaking during the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking at Sheikh Amri Abeid Memorial Stadium, said it was hurting to see young men and women becoming insane, due to drug abuse.

“Some ended up usurping traffic officers’ duties and directing traffic on our roads, simply because they were under the drug influence,” posed the Head of State.

Elaborating, Dr Samia ordered garage owners to crap a whip on rogue mechanics, who have a tendency of storing drugs on vehicles’ exhaust pipes in attempt to avoid police and other authorities’ detection.

Equally, she directed relevant authorities to descend on such mechanics and garage owners, noting that the habit must not be allowed to grow.

“That’s how drug abuse is taking new approach, this must be put to an end,” she directed.

The President was, however, quick to point out Tanzania has made success in controlling drug trafficking, saying the country had achieved the feat by 90 per cent.

Nonetheless, young people continued to bear the brunt of the effects of Cannabis, according to the President.

Dr Samia underscored the importance of improving intelligence sharing on drug trafficking and peddling in the country.

“Authorities need to step up their efforts in seriously dealing with the vice,” she said.

In fighting the menace, the Head of State called upon Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and  Non-governmental organisations(NGOs) to continue engaging and sensitising the youth on the dangers of drug abuse.

“It is worth noting to see the reformed addicts and the government is committed to ensure that they easily become integrated into the society after years of living wayward lives,” she pointed out.

Recent studies have indicated some 247467 illegal substances weighing 25357.9 kilograms seized and tested at the Government Chemist Laboratory Authority (GCLA), an average of 6339.5 kilogrammes annually. According to the findings, cannabis was the most frequently encountered substance, accounting for 80.6 per cent , 88.2 per cent and 83 per cent of all incidents, samples, and weight, respectively.

Heroin came in second with 12.6 per cent of the total incidents and 7.4 per cent of the total number of samples, while khat came in second with 15.2 per cent of the weight of the seized illegal substances.

To encourage people across the world to quit drug addiction and live a healthier life, International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking is observed on June 26 every year.

The event began after the adoption of a resolution in December 1987 at the United Nations.

The resolution recognised the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.

This year’s theme of the day is “People first: stop stigma and discrimination, strengthen prevention.”

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