By Amie Taylor
In another swing of their axe, officers of the Drug Law Enforcement Agency have arrested 15 people suspected of trafficking and abusing illicit drugs.
The arrests were made following a two-day raid by law enforcers in West Coast Region, a drug hotspot.
“We conducted raids once or twice a month but the checkpoints are continuous,” Yuma Lowe, the deputy commissioner DLEAG West Coast Region, told The Standard.
“Tanji is the place that we feel is necessary to fight drugs in any way,” she added.She revealed that many youths in The Gambia meet at Tanji trying to make ends meet by engaging in businesses while raising concern over the exposure of Gambian youths to drugs.
According to Mrs Lowe, most of these drugs are cultivated beyond our borders, in the Casamance region, and transported into The Gambia.
Mrs Lowe said that the agency also conduct ambushes in addition to mounting roadblocks and checkpoints.
According to Lowe, majority of the persons arrested are youths between 17-30 years of age. She added that the suspects were in possession of cannabis and diazepam in very few cases.
“There is no safe zone for any drug trafficker or abuser in this country,” Ousman Saidybah, PRO DLEAG, added.
Mr Saidybah said that DLEAG is doing its best to go to places where there is open usage of drugs.
He said the Drug Control Act has made it clear that individuals do not frequently visit places where drugs are commonly abused. “If you even move from the aspect of the legal provision, this is for your own safety,” he said. Frequenting, according to Mr Saidybah, is dangerous as fights normally happen in drug used areas and one can easily suffer from a drug induced crime.
“We need the support of every member of the community because drugs do not exist in isolation”, he said. He added that if a difference is to be made, we need to come together.
The Standard witnessed an exhibition of a large heap of Cannabis Sativa.