DEA Takes Maun Drug Problem Head-On!

Date:

  • Agency, police launch operation in Maun
  • Operation targets drug related activities
  • Dagga, CAT, Cocaine most prevalent
  • Agency also embarks on community outreach
  • Targets students, teachers, parents and street vendors

Prompted by the widespread use of illicit drugs in Maun especially among the youths, the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) this week descended on Maun to further its mandate to combat the alarming rate of drug use across the country.

The agency’s education and outreach wing, along with key stakeholders held a week-long undertaking in Maun sensitising the public to join hands and fight the use of illicit drugs. The activities were a build up to the national Anti-Drugs Campaign to be launched in Maun this Friday under the theme, ‘drugs my enemy, your enemy, united we can win.’

DEA Public Education Director, Motshereganyi Sefanyetso indicated that though they covered other areas that include Nata, Gaborone, Selibe-Phikwe and Serowe, Maun remains an area of concern because according to the police statistics, there is high number of cases relating to illicit drug abuse in the area.

He revealed that though the outreach is targeting the youth demography, they have however intensified the campaign in schools as this is where the situation is also reported to be worrisome.

The engagements also targeted the community at large including Parents Teachers Associations, churches, parents, hawkers and street vendors. There has been a concern in the involvement of hawkers and street vendors, car washes in selling drugs to the community and students as well.

According to police statistics, the drugs that are popularly used in Maun are dagga, Methcathinone which is popularly known as CAT as well as cocaine with dagga leading the numbers followed by CAT and then cocaine. From 2020 to 2023 police recorded rising cases of the use of these drugs altogether with a total of 33 recorded in 2020, 50 in both 2021 and 2022 then 60 in 2023.

Dagga cases weighing 4.273kg were registered in 2020, 14.553kg in 2021, 2022 (80.816kg) and 9.471kg in 2023. With regards to CAT, in 2020 the drugs weighed at 23.138g, 251.717g in 2021, 818.271g in 2022 while in 2023 the weigh stood at 166g.

Between 2020 and 2023 police arrested a total of 233 males and 37 females all being Botswana citizens while there were only 6 male non-citizens arrested in 2022. The age analysis indicates that between 2020 and 2023 a total of 24 (both males and females) were of age ranging between 10-19, those aged between 20-29 were 125, 30 – 39 years (88), 40 – 49 years (39) and 50 – 59 years (4).

The socio-economic profile comparison shows that between 2020 and 2023 there were only 2 cases involving students, 121 were Out of School Youth, 35 (employed) 121 (unemployed).

Established in accordance with Section (V) of the Illicit Traffic in Narcotics and Psychotropic Substances Act of 2018, DEA is mandated to collect, collate and disseminate information on illegal use of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances. Additionally, the agency is tasked to receive, investigate any complaint of alleged or suspected breach of the Act.

It also addresses and advise government ministries and departments, public bodies, institutions, companies, statutory bodies and corporations on ways and means of preventing prohibited activities relating to narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances. 

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