Capt Baffour Assasie-Gyimah addressing the gathering
A TOTAL of 9,924 narcotic drug-related cases were recorded in four different hospitals in the country from 2010 to mid-year 2013.
The highest drug-related cases were recorded in 2012, with cases exceeding 3,782. Out of the figure, 3690 were male, while 89 were reported to be females, representing 98 percent and two percent respectively.
Capt Baffour Assasie-Gyimah, Chairman of the Narcotics Control Board (NACOB) made this revelation during this year’s celebration of the World Drug Day held at the assembly hall of the Our Lady of Mercy (OLAM) Senior High School, Tema.
The programme was themed: ‘A Message of Hope; Drug Use Disorders Are Preventable and Treatable.’
The day was set aside by the United Nations (UN) to encourage member countries to create awareness and also sustain public education on the negative social and economic effects of drug abuse and illicit drug trafficking.
Capt Assasie-Gyimah was of the view that the alarming figures that were recorded in the four hospitals were cases that have not been reported to any hospital or rehabilitation centre.
NACOB as an institution, he mentioned, has identified demand reduction as a key area that needs attention and has since intensified their sensitisation campaign, aimed at highlighting the harmful effects of drug use.
The NACOB Chairman stated that ‘our programmes offer a lifeline to those already abusing the drugs as well as those who intend to abuse the illicit drugs.’
He further explained that besides the educational campaign, counselling, rehabilitation and social integration unit of NACOB have partnered some private rehabilitation centres to offer technical support services to drug addicts.
NACOB in collaboration with government is seeking funding from its international partners to construct an ultra-modern rehabilitation centre to house drug addicts to ease congestions at the various psychiatric hospitals in the country.
According to him, ‘Indeed drug use disorders are preventable and treatable, and NACOB will channel available resources to campaign against illicit use of drugs, promote expansion in treatment and rehabilitation programmes as well as ensure social reintegration of drug addicts.’
From Vincent Kubi, Tema
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