The fight against drug abuse and illicit trafficking remains one of Government's priorities in its endeavour to promote a safer and healthier society. Since January 2015 up to 16 July 2020, a total of 232 drug cases have been detected in the regions of Trèfles and Plaisance, leading to the arrest of 236 persons compared to 317 cases from 2009 to 2014. As a result of the intensified actions by the Police in the fight against drugs, a decrease of about 27% has been observed in drug cases detected in the regions concerned.
This statement was made by the Prime Minister, Mr Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, today, in reply to a parliamentary question at the National Assembly, in Port Louis.
The Prime Minister also pointed out that for the past decades, cannabis (gandia), heroin, subutex and psychotropic substances (sedatives and tranquilizers) have been the four most abused drugs in Mauritius. However, he stated, over the past years there has been an emergence of synthetic drugs, particularly synthetic cannabinoids, among drug users. This situation also prevails in the regions of Trèfles and Plaisance, he remarked.
Speaking about counteractive measures taken by the Police to halt drug proliferation, Mr Jugnauth enumerated the following:
The conduct of targeted intelligence-led crackdown operations by the Anti-Drug and Smuggling Unit (ADSU) and other units of the Force;
Sensitisation campaigns carried out jointly by the ADSU Education Cell, Crime Prevention Unit and local Police on the ill effects of drugs and its legal implications;
Awareness raising, particularly among youngsters on the repercussion of drugs, carried out jointly with sociocultural groups;
The recent record of drug seizures has considerably influenced the supply and availability of drugs on the local market;
Contribution of the Safe City Project in the prevention and detection of crimes and illicit activities including drugs. Eleven Intelligence Video Surveillance cameras have been installed at different locations in these regions;
Daily road blocks and vehicle check points are carried out at odd hours by SMF, SSU and ERS personnel in the regions of Trèfles and Plaisance. Thus, suspicious persons and drivers of vehicles are being questioned and systematically checked; and
Additional resources in terms of vehicles and manpower have been provided to the ADSU to increase their operational effectiveness. ADSU personnel have also been provided with tailor-made training and sophisticated equipment to enhance their operational capabilities.
For the Prime Minister, over and above the measures taken by the Police, the collaboration of all other stakeholders is imperative to make Mauritius a drug-free island.