Following a decision of the United Nations General Assembly on 7 Dec, 1987 it has been decided to observe 26 June as the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking. It has been decided at Government level that the International Day Against Drug Abuse will be commerated on 28 June, 2018, in Mauritius.
The International Community continues to face many problems that stand in the way of achieving the aim of a world without drug abuse. There is the drug crisis and other urgent drug use problem such as inter-related illicit drug cultivation and trafficking, suicide associated crime and violence and mortality due to drug overdose are increasing cause of concern.
But as daunting as these problems are, all of us can do our part. It is considered decision makers concerned citizens, parents, teachers, voluntary social workers can all work together to prevent drug abuse.
'Listen First' is the theme chosen this year for the marking of International Drug Day. Research suggests that early to late dependence is a critical risk phase for the initiation of drug addiction. By breaking the chain of inter-related social, psychological factors that increase tendency towards drug intake, it is expected that we can help young people to grow up safe and in sound health.
International Drug Day has been celebrated in Mauritius on Thurs 28 June, 2018 with the organisation of a March starting from Parking area of Taxi Stand of Flacq to proceed to Sir Leckraj Teelock State Secondary School (S.S.S) at Flacq. Dr the Hon Anwar Husnoo, Minister of Health and Quality of Life, Hon Pritviraj Roopun, Minister of Arts and Culture, Hon R.Rampertab, Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS), Hon R. Dayal, Member of National Assembly, Hon Tarolah, Member of National Assembly, representatives of diverse Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOS), the Youth, students took part in the March. It is estimated an impressive enthusiastic 7,000 group took part in the March. It was an opportunity to create awareness on the inimical drug problem.
It emerged that the Anti Narcotics Section of Mauritius Revenue Authority (MRA) is having recourse to a number of measures on surveillance and eradication of drug problem. Scanners have been put up at SSR International Airport, the Mauritius Container Terminal of the port. Since May 2016, a state of Art Gantry Container Scanner is instrumental to stop inflow of contraband drug product. There is resort to sniffer dog and development of Passenger Tracking system to trace any risky passenger. In 2017 drug worth Rs2, 917, 038,335 were seized and in 2018, drug of the value Rs 766,583,693 has been seized.
The Anti-Drug Smuggling Unit (ADSU) of Police has been active in drug seizing operation. On 30 April, 2018 a consignment of 2.79 kg of heroin worth Rs 41,850,000 was seized. On 28 May, 2018 4.5 Kg of cannabis worth Rs 2,706,000 was seized On 10 June, 2018, ADSU successfully prevented introduction of a consignment of 2.61 kg of synthetic cannabinoid drug worth Rs 39,150,000. In 2018, drug of an overall value of Rs 317,584,467 has been seized.
At the level of the Ministry of Health and Quality of Life, the Harm Reduction has undertaken a number of education programmes at the level of Secondary Schools, the community for prevention of drug problem. Prevention is truly better than cure. Nevertheless the initiative has been taken to arrange for rehabilitation of drug addiction cases at the Detoxification and rehabilitation Centre of Mahebourg Hospital. It is expected that arrangements will be made for the coming into operation of a new Rehabilitation Centre at Long Mountain Hospital in the North.
It is considered that that by listening to the need of the young, prevention can contribute to safe, healthy frame of mind and enable the youth to realize their potential and harness their creative faculty to bring their building block for the progress and development of the country
The International Drug Day will call for reflection to converge our effort to prevent drug addiction and to strive to combat Drug dealing and drug trafficking to get rid of the appalling drug scourge
We display exerpts of the highly participative demonstration of solidarity for celebration of the International Drug to put an end to the pernicious and harmful effect of drug addiction and reprehensible drug trafficking problem.