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Religious group wants change of tact in fight against alcoholism

Kenya Anglican Men Association (KAMA) in Kirinyaga now want the government to have a change of strategy in the fight against alcoholism, drugs and substance abuse if the war is to be won.

The association call for change of strategies saying most youths are already too deep into alcoholism and need rehabilitation and not arrests by chiefs and their assistants

Speaking in Gichugu after a church function, KAMA faulted the current strategy being deployed by the chiefs and their assistants of arresting consumers and pouring the liquor, as just a temporary technique that will not achieve much since some of the culprits are still accessing it in hideouts and continuing with their business.

Naftaly Githinji, the KAMA chairman, said arresting brewers and pouring the alcohol without rehabilitating the addicts has exposed them to withdrawal syndrome that has seen some of them dying mainly by suicide.

Githinji called upon the government to first come up with rehabilitation centers where the youth who are already addicted can be rehabilitated and guided into stopping alcohol consumption. He says the rehabilitation process will see the youth gradually taken through the healing process before they are released and introduced to economic empowerment programmes.

“Rehabilitation is key in the fight against alcohol in this country. The government should plan how to deal with them in the process of withdrawal and at the same time giving them opportunities to empower themselves”

Gichugu youth leader Justus Munene says that the alcoholic menace in Central Kenya should not be perceived as a men only affair saying there are women who are also so addicted and need help.

Munene says that issues of alcoholism should not be politicised and instead the rehabilitation centers should be established in every constituency and the youth treated for free while they are introduced to meaningful economic activities.

“There is need for more rehabilitation centers to accommodate more who have been deeply affected by the alcohol”

He adds that the government should hire more guidance and counselling experts in the constituencies to go to schools and other learning institutions to teach them on the negative impacts of alcohol and drug abuse so as to save the generation.

“Guidance and Counselling experts should be sent to our institutions of learning to teach our children the harms of illicit drugs”

By Mutai Kipngetich

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