Pubdate: Mon, 27 Jun 2005
Source: Post, The (Zambia)
Copyright: Post Newspapers 2005
Author: Nomusa Maunga


Lusaka - ZAMBIA is not safe from the threats of drugs trafficking, home 
affairs minister Kalombo Mwansa has said.

Officiating at the Commemoration the International Day Against Drug Abuse 
organised by the Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) at the Lusaka National 
Museum yesterday, Mwansa said there was urgent need to tackle drug 
trafficking and money laundering as they threatened efforts designed to 
reduce poverty.

"If tolerated, money launderers and drug traffickers have the capacity to 
either form parallel governments or sponsor terrorism and fuel civil 
unrest," he said,

Mwansa said the effects of drug trafficking had crippling effects in all 
sectors of any economy as it threatened and frustrated efforts aimed at 
good governance and poverty reduction.

"Worse still, institutions of good governance such as the Judiciary and law 
enforcement agencies may become compromised in executing their duties," he 

He said Zambia was not safe from the ills of money laundering and drug 
trafficking and urged the public to guard against the use and trafficking 
of illegal drugs.

"Our country is not safe and we are not exempted from the problem of drug 
trafficking," he said.

Mwansa also said drug abuse had contributed to the spread of HIV, through 
needle sharing and reckless behaviour as a result of illegal drug use and 
urged all people to value themselves and keep away from abuse of drugs.

He also commended the DEC for its efforts in creating awareness on drugs 
and tackling money laundering in the country.

And DEC Commissioner Ryan Chitoba said the outcomes of drug abuse can now 
be seen in the increased number of homeless children.

"Offshoots of drug use have caused an increase in the number of homeless 
children," Chitoba said.

He also called on the government to team up with the business community to 
construct a drug rehabilitation centre as the country had recorded an 
increase in the number of people who needed rehabilitation.

Chitoba said statistics indicate that over 800 people have sought 
drugs-related counselling in the past year, which was in indicator that the 
abuse of drugs was on the increase.
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