Police Month: RNP in mass campaign against illicit drugs

Police and Local officials meeting with residents.

The Police Month activities continued on Tuesday with focus on narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances, one of the pressing issues affecting especially the youth and ab accessory to other crimes.

Rwanda National Police (RNP) was joined by other security organs, officials from the justice sector and local leaders in countrywide campaigns which were also characterised by disposing off of assorted illicit drugs.

Narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances worth over Rwf191 million seized in separate Police operations in the last three months in Northern Province districts of Burera, Gicumbi, Rulindo and Gakenke, were publicly destroyed.

A similar campaign was conducted in Gatsibo and Nyagatare districts, wheren of illicit substances worth over Rwf18 million, combined.

In Nyanza and Ruhango districts about 140kgs of cannabis and some 1700 litres of a crude illicit gin locally known as Kanyanga, were disposed of.

While addressing thousands of residents of Burera on Monday, the State Minister in charge of Public and Primary Healthcare, Dr. Patrick Ndimubanzi said that drugs are destroying communities.

Illicit drugs worth Rwf182 million were seized in Burera alone in the last three months.

"It would be a hard and challenging but possible job for law enforcement officers to eradicate narcotics in Rwanda if you don’t collaborate with police to defeat those who poison the young people with these substances and destroy communities," Ndimubanzi said.

Burera is mapped as one I the major trafficking routes, especially for illicit gin.

The State Minister thanked residents for their role in fighting the vice, and urged them to give no room for dealers to use their communities as hubs or transit routes.

The mayor of Rulindo Emmanuel Kayiranga, while addressing residents of Bushoki sector where over 7000 pellets of cannabis and 2940 sachets of Sky blue were destroyed, urged them to report drug dealers.

"When you see a drug dealer don't keep quiet, call the Police or local leaders," Kayiranga told residents.

The acting District Police Commander for Rulindo, Chief Inspector of Police Jean de Dieu Sibomana, recognized the role of residents in information sharing on drug dealers, which led to the seizure of the disposed of drugs, and arrest of dealers.

The awareness against drugs, which will continue throughout the first week of the Police Month, also involves educating the public on legal repercussions and their role in combating the vice.

Under the new law, the penalty was increased from the maximum seven-year sentence to life in prison.

The Police month is held under the theme "19 years of partnership in policing towards sustainable safety and better livelihood for Rwandans."