Editorial comment – Fighting against hard drugs
25 August, 2019, 12:03 pm
IT WAS interesting to note the impact the hard drug situation in our country has had on various sections of society.
Yesterday, a group of mothers, calling themselves the “Ministry of Mums” made a commitment to steer children away from the illicit drug trade.
They met for the first time at the Fiji Museum in Suva yesterday for a “Meth Awareness Picnic”.
Organiser Ellana Kalounisiga said the illicit drug trade was growing by the day in the country and they thought they could assist the Fiji Police Force by being proactive in raising awareness about the worrying issue.
The Ministry of Mums, she said, is a group of concerned mums and citizens of Fiji coming out in the fight against drugs.
It has set a goal to “firstly create awareness among youths by getting out into the community and sharing information”.
“The second goal that we have is to set up a dropping centre and we’d love to look at supporting someone to set up a rehab centre for Fiji.
“It’s all about a group of mums who care about the future generation and who care greatly about the influx of meth into Fiji.”
Members of the group are keen to work towards eradicating the issue after seeing the outcomes of the abuse of hard drugs in neighbouring countries such as Australia and New Zealand.
“There is no greater force on this planet than a group of mums protecting their kids and our kids’ future.”
Mrs Kalounisiga is also pleading with other mothers and fathers to join them in the fight and be part of the movement.
“We will keep going, keep raising awareness and keep fighting against hard drugs in Fiji.”
In July this year, Police Commissioner Brigadier-General Sitiveni Qiliho revealed the availability of methamphetamine in its liquid form.
The police chief said police had previously only dealt with crystallised meth.
“Before it was dealt in finer crystals but now it’s in bigger crystals,” he said.
The two main hard drugs, he said, that were being picked up by police were methamphetamine and cocaine.
The demand and the overproduction of drugs in South America, he said, had led to the increased movement of drugs through the Pacific.
Australia and New Zealand, he said, were tightening up on their home front and Fiji was also on the same course.
Brig-Gen Qiliho said as they increased their efforts in the war against drugs on Fiji’s streets, police were also making daily drug-related arrests.
The arrests being made, he insisted, were a good sign that people were informing police about illegal activities.
The scenario is frightening.
It previews a frightening future if we are unable to effectively address this situation.
Now more than ever the police need our support to fight this.
They need us to be vigilant.
They need us to be proactive.
There is a massive return for dealers, pushers and manufacturers of meth.
The money is lucrative.
The end result is sad though.
What has changed?
The arrests and information now being shared are indicative of a trend that has developed over time.
This certainly isn’t something that has just popped out of the woodworks.
We must say no to drugs.
But we must also question what can be done as a positive response to this frightening situation?
What can the powers that be do, to address the scenarios that have given birth to this reality?
Groups such as the Ministry of Mums are standing up to be counted.