By Elvis Muraranganda
THE smuggling and dealing of drugs, well as the consumption of these illegal substances has rocked the coast over the years, forcing towns like Walvis Bay to set up a drug enforcement unit within the police structure, in order to combat these activities.
In a bid to create more awareness around on the detrimental consequences that illicit drugs cause in society, the Coalition on Responsible Drinking (CORD), together with Hospitality Association of Namibia’s (HAN) coastal team, held an event to commemorate International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.
The day is normally commemorated annually on 26 June.
However, the Swakopmund event was held at the town’s amphitheatre last Friday.
According to Annet Kötting, chairperson of the HAN Coastal Task Group, the focus this year was to involve many scholars in this awareness-creating event.
“Various speeches were delivered and there were performances by 11 primary and high schools in Swakopmund,” Kötting explained.
“A speech was delivered by Warrant Officer Ileni Shapumba of the Namibian Police Force Community Affairs Sub-Division on Drugs, Alcohol, Illicit Trafficking, in relation to crime among school learners – an issue that society needs to pay closer attention to,” she said.
Kötting further commended the schools, who performed at the event.
“Acting is a very effective way of conveying a message and is vital in instilling a sense of responsibility among the Namibian youth.
“HAN believes this to be a very good initiative, through the CORD committee, and was disappointed at the turnout of schools who confirmed to participate and then did not turn up.”
Kötting added: “HAN feels strongly that the youth should be encouraged to focus on issues affecting their own well-being and development, such as substance abuse, and would thus like to request the Ministry of Education to investigate the absence of the schools who confirmed and did not show up, as this is not fair to the others who made the effort.”
Kötting further indicated that the CORD committee had approached them for a sponsorship for refreshments for the learners participating at the event.
“Being part of the hospitality industry, HAN Coastal saw this as an opportunity to give back to learners and society, as this is a topic of great relevance to the development of our youth, and our future leaders.
“Hotels and suppliers came together to prepare 250 hot dogs, and sponsored water and soft drinks to the learners peforming at this event.”
Other stakeholders who supported the commemorations include Swakopmund Hotel & Entertainment Centre, who sponsored 264 bottles of water, Hansa Hotel, Hotel Eberwein and Flamingo Villas from Walvis Bay, who all sponsored soft drinks.
Hotel Europa Hof made provision for hotdog rolls, Hansa Bakery prepared the fresh rolls and Benguella Butchery donated 250 viennas. Meanwhile, Herco Marketing and Strand Hotel also contributed towards soft drinks and food items.
The presence of illicitly trafficked of drugs on Namibian streets has reached alarming proportions, ruining many lives, especially those of young people.
The latest illicit drug to hit Namibia’s streets is an addictive concoction of rat poison, heroin and antiretroviral drugs called nyaope, commonly found in South Africa.
It is now available on Namibian soil for N$120 a gram.
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015