Police urged to intensify crackdown on drug peddlers

Various stakeholders in Bulawayo have called on the police to intensify its crackdown on drug peddlers to deter citizens from using and peddling hard drugs.  

This came out during a Drugs Awareness Seminar at the Zimbabwe Academy of Music in Bulawayo, Saturday. 

The event was hosted by C&A Entertainment, Arcadia Child Trust, Pamumvuri, Youth Network Connect and Islamic Women’s Initiative Trust Compassionate Care.

Recently, the police launched an anti-drug and substance abuse campaign dubbed, “No to Dangerous Drugs and Illicit Substances,” and have so far arrested 2 754 people.

In an interview with CITE, the coordinator of the event, Iqbal Jassat, popularly known as Uncle Billy, noted that the event was the first of its kind in Bulawayo and it was necessitated by an observation that drug abuse was fast spreading among young people. 

“I asked myself, why is it that young people think it’s “cool” to indulge in alcohol? Then I realised that there are a lot of people doing boot drinks around town. They just park outside bottle stores and drink yet there are pubs where they can do such. They expose the youths to the wrong behaviour,” Jassat said.

“We are imploring the police to implement strict policies that will protect children from such. People should drink in secluded places. We did a similar event in Harare last year in December and this is the first of its kind in Bulawayo. We intend to have more as we continue preaching the danger of drug addiction.”

A representative from the CID Narcotics Department who was addressing the event said to date they are doing their best to enforce the law.

“We are doing our best to capture drug peddlers but we are incapacitated. We do not have enough resources but nonetheless, we are working with what we have. The Central Police in the CBD was given a truck they use to patrol between 6 PM and midnight arresting people who do public drinking,” she said. 

A representative from Ingutsheni Hospital, Tafara Manyuni, explained how addicts alternate between being stimulated and depressed due to excessive abuse, citing that it pushes some to be suicidal.

“When you get addicted to stimulants, you start alternating between depression and overstimulation. When then you fail to get the drug consistently you become suicidal that is what makes drug addicts suicidal,” he said.

“Drug addiction also affects you socially. You can no longer spend time with family, friends, church mates. You would want to be surrounded by people who are addicts as well or who can supply you. They start stealing to feed the drug and if they are working they start absenting themselves.”

A local pharmacist, Clever Nyoka, explained that it is not only dangerous drugs that people should worry about, there are also some cases in which patients get addicted to certain drugs used for medicinal purposes. 

He said there is a need for doctors and pharmacists to work together closely and be in constant communication to monitor their patients. 

Recovering addicts also shared their testimonies, narrating how they got addicted and what they did to get their lives back on track. 

Some shared that they got help through rehabilitation centres, consulting psychiatrists and having support from their families and they reiterated that prayer has helped them to stay on course. 

A parent who identified herself as Nontobeko shared that she started a Trust in honour of her son, Ayanda, who succumbed to drug abuse at a tender age. 

“Drug abuse is real, it claimed my son. As parents, we need to protect our children, and monitor them closely. This young generation always complains that we are not listening to them as children. We are not raising angels, they are not immune to temptation,” she shared. 

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button