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Garissa drug peddlers put on notice as leaders unite to end drug abuse

Garissa County Commissioner Mohamed Mwabudzo has issued a stern warning to all drug peddlers and smugglers in the county noting that time has come to deal with the roots of drug abuse to save the society.

Speaking during a special meeting with the county and sub-county security teams, a section of MCAs, religious leaders, elders, bar owners’ association, and officials from relevant government officials at the Garissa guest house, the county commissioner said that the government will not sit back and let the greedy peddlers have a field day in selling drugs.

Mwabudzo also directed all pharmacists in the county to stop selling prescribed drugs to members of the public because some of them are being abused.

“We are directing that these peddlers stop immediately because we are coming for them and we will not allow the society to be destroyed by a few greedy people. We are also closely following those who are also smuggling drugs from across the neighbouring countries and we will arrest them,” Mwabudzo said.

“As the county and the sub-county security teams, elders, religious leaders, and the political class in Garissa, we have decided that we will have more engagements after one month to review the progress and come up with more measures to end drug abuse in Garissa,” he added.

Garissa County Assembly deputy speaker and Iftin MCA Musdaf Abdirashid urged the area citizens to unite against drug abuse, especially at a time when they are now being introduced to school children.

“We have said here in one voice that this has to be arrested as soon as possible. We will knock on all doors and all caves going after the peddlers of these drugs. I want to tell the people who are doing this business that their days are numbered,” Abdirashid said.

“This is the time that the people of Garissa need to speak in one voice so that our future generations can be saved from destruction. Kids are getting introduced to these drugs at a tender age. It is time to step out of the comfort zone so that we can address the issues of bhang, muguka, miraa, shisha, alcohol and all other hard drugs,” he added.

Abdirashid said that the county assembly will come up with a bill that will seek to regulate the sale and use of muguka and miraa in the county and ensure that it is not easily accessible to underage children.

“We will customize the Mututho law and add what we feel that people of Garissa need in that bill so that we can control and regulate the use of both muguka and miraa,” he said.

Wangui Gachoka, the North Eastern regional manager for NACADA said that the biggest problem was miraa and muguka commonly known as poliuse.

He regretted that some of the drugs used were those that should be prescribed by a psychiatric doctor.

“These drugs are supposed to be under key and lock because they are strictly under prescription. Unfortunately, as we have seen they are being abused by miraa and muguka chewers which is illegal,” Gachoka said.

He called on the pharmacy and poisons board to rise up to the occasion and regulate the mushrooming of chemists in the town which he said have in a way contributed to the problem since some of them were employing quacks who were then selling the drugs without prescription.

By Erick Kyalo and Abdulgani Hussein

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