Drug Abuse in Cameroon. Drug Abuse Data in Cameroon. Adverse Effects of Drug Abuse on Youths. Measures Taken by the Government to curb drug abuse.
Drug abuse in Cameroon is rising, whereas rehabilitation centers are not widespread to help tackle the problem.
Drug Abuse Statistics in Cameroon
Cameroon’s Anti-drug National Committee (CNLD) recently released statistics on narcotic consumption in the country. Data shows that 21 percent of the population have already tried a hard drug. 10% are frequent consumers, including 60 percent of young people aged 20 to 25.
Most consumed products include cannabis (58.54%), which is very often associated with tobacco, tramadol (44.6 %), and cocaine (12.1 %). Traditional makeshift preparations account for 7.59 percent, while solvents and heroin account for 7.36 percent and 5.70 percent, respectively.
Furthermore, CNLD says that more than 12,000 young people under 15 also consume narcotics and psychotropic substances.
Read Also: List of Essential Drugs in Cameroon.
Adverse Effects of Drug Abuse on Cameroonian Youths
Under the influence of these various narcotics, the youths who have been shielded by the scent of drugs have perpetrated unheard violence; the killings and assassination of persons, the destruction of properties, the use of weapons of war, and other military arsenals.
The advent of ICT has contributed increasingly to promoting young people’s access to drugs and developing illicit marketing. This has jeopardized the lives of hundreds of young Cameroonians, induced school and university dropouts as well as increased mortality amongst the youths.
Measures Taken by the Government of Cameroon against Drug Abuse
- Conscious of this fact, the inter-ministerial committee for the fight against the cultivation of Marijuana, under the direct auspices of the Prime Minister, Head of Government, on January 22, launched a national anti-drug mobilization campaign. This is to add to the numerous efforts made by the government that attests to its constant resolve to curb the global scourge of drugs as follows:
- The Ministry of Basic Education has introduced lessons to combat smoking, drugs, and alcoholism into school curricula, and the security services have carried out multiple seizures to demonstrate their resolve to eradicate the circulation of narcotics.
- The ministry of Agriculture has committed itself to implement programs to promote healthier alternative crops like potatoes, cereals, beans, and tubers.
- The Social Affairs, Public Health, Physical Education, and Sports ministries have implemented the 100% smoke-free environment policy in their services.
Press Conference to Raise Awareness on Drug Abuse and Rehab
In a press conference to raise national awareness of the severe scourges underpinning the cultivation, commercialization, and consumption of cannabis and other psychotropic substances, the Minister of Communication further outlined some of the measures the Head of State took to anticipate and curb the phenomenon.
The minister briefly talked about the ratifications of the various United Nations conventions on narcotic drugs by Cameroon, psychotropic substances and precursors, the setting up since 1992 of a National Anti-Drug Committee at the Ministry of Public Health, and a more focus on issues related to the psycho-clinical and case management of drug users just to name these few.
Drug abuse remains a massive problem amongst youths and citizens in Cameroon. There is a need for reinforcement of the abuse measures, as well as the creation of drug and alcohol rehabilitation centers in Cameroon.