19 December 2012

Namibia: The Dangers of Drug Trafficking

THE Swapo Party Youth League (SPYL) is disturbed at both formal and informal reports of a number of Namibian youth being entangled in the illegal trafficking of drugs into and out of Namibia.

Our information is that illegal, addictive drugs such as cannabis, ecstasy, mandrax, cocaine, heroin and lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) arrive in Namibia from South Africa, Angola and Zambia, as well as from Europe and Asia, Brazil, Columbia and Peru.

The New Era edition of 9th November 2011 informed Namibia that the Namibian Consulate in Rio de Janeiro has noted the increasing number of Namibian women in Brazilian jails for drug related crimes. It is said that there are 10 Namibians currently detained in Brazilian prisons for drug related offences. These are mainly young women.

We are aware and recall the case of Darlin Taylor-Da Silva Paiva, the 26-year-old Namibian woman who died in 2006, when a package of drugs she was carrying burst in her digestive system. Let the arrest, in 2010, of Olivia Shilunga be remembered as another case.

Despite the risks involved young Namibian women find it fashionable to stuff drugs in their private parts to evade detection and to travel to distant lands to deliver these drugs to criminals for high profits, notwithstanding the punitive prison sentences incurred if they are caught.

Those contemplating acting as drug couriers/mules should bear in mind the havoc illicit drugs cause in the community, fueling addiction that destroys families and spreads crime, in the process weakening the moral fibre of society at large.

The consumption of addictive drugs is on the increase and we are currently in the season of the year where drug use is most rife.

We therefore urge young people to cooperate with law enforcement agencies and report all illegal drug related activities. Young people need to be aware of the risks they run if they get caught up in the dangerous world of drug trafficking.

There is an alternative life, a life free of drugs, a life of hard work and of genuine, clean and honest rewards. Youth economic empowerment is central to this emancipation. While we will play our role in our campaigns to the Namibian youth starting January 2013, we call on all the stakeholders and those that care to take the issue of drugs amongst the youth seriously.

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