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Sierra Leone hosts National Townhall against Kush today

HomeNewsSierra Leone hosts National Townhall against Kush today

Sierra Leone hosts National Townhall against Kush today

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The Government of Sierra Leone through the Ministry of Information and Civic Education will today hold a National Townhall meeting to stop Kush at the Bintumani Conference Centre in Freetown.
Hosted by the Minister of Information and Civic Education, Chernor Bah, the Townhall will feature speakers including the Ministers of Health, Youth, Social Welfare, Internal Affairs, Attorney General and minister of Justice, Inspector General of Police, Executive Director – National Drug Enforcement Agency and the Parliamentary Leader of the main opposition All People’s Congress (APC) Party.
Joining hands to stop the importation and sale of the killer drug in Sierra Leone, today’s meeting which will held with the theme: ‘A National Conversation on how we can join hands to Stop Kush’, will also feature the Ambassadors of EU ad USA, members of the Consular and Diplomatic Corps, traditional and religious leaders.
Minister of Information and Civic Education, Chernor Bah said: “Our special National Townhall will bring together a wide array of stakeholders. We will dive deep, review actions, ask questions and talk about how we can all join hands to end the Kush crisis in our country. Please join us at Bintumani to add your voice. Send questions in advance. And follow live on multiple platforms”.
Lately, there have been calls for the Government to declare a State of Public Emergency to end the deadly epidemic.
Many people have accused the government of being handicap to curtail the further abuse of the new killer drug.
The term “Kush in Sierra Leone is quite different; it is a mixture of cannabis, fentanyl, tramadol, formaldehyde and – according to some – ground down human bones”.
In 2008, the Government of Sierra Leone passed The National Drugs Control Act of 2008 (hereinafter referred to as ‘The Act’). The interpretation Section of the Act states, “Being an Act to establish the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency; to provide for the control of and prevention of abuse of narcotic drugs; to implement the provisions of International Drug Control Conventions, and to provide for other related matters.”
The Act also created the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency mandated to ensure the eradication of drug abuse in Sierra Leone. Section 2 (a) of the Act inter alia clearly states that the primary function of the Agency is “providing leadership in and coordinating all issues relating to drug control, eradicating drug abuse and the primary causes of drug abuse, illicit drug supply and drug-related crime;”
The Act has been used to prosecute crimes related to possession of Kush within the country.  Section 8 of the said states thus: “A person who, without lawful authority–
(a) buys, sells, possesses or has under his control, any drug or uses any drug by smoking, inhaling, sniffing, injecting or otherwise introduces the drug into his body; or
(b) injects any person with or in any manner administers a drug to any person,
commits an offence and is liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term not less than five years.”
In recent years, Accused persons have been arraigned before magistrates on allegations of “Unlawful Possession Kush” contrary to Section 8 of the Act.
Why is Sierra Leone still grappling with this new social epidemic despite the availability of a legal provision that criminalises it, is the answer many people hoped the Townhall will address today.

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