NSAAC: Hard drugs in schools

Eleven cases of hard drugs were recorded in secondary schools in the Suva and Ba/Tavua education districts between July 2016 and June 2017. Picture: RAMA

ELEVEN cases of hard drugs were recorded in secondary schools in the Suva and Ba/Tavua education districts between July 2016 and June 2017. This was revealed in a supplementary book formulated by the National Substance Abuse Advisory Council (NSAAC) for the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking. It is unclear however what type of hard drugs these were, as school heads had just filled hard drugs when they submitted their forms to NSAAC. Suva accounted for 10 cases, while one was recorded in the Ba and Tavua education district. The report highlighted that tobacco, inhalants, and marijuana were the three drugs mostly abused by secondary school students. A total of 1197 cases of drugs were recorded in secondary schools around the country, with tobacco topping the list recording 581 cases followed by inhalants accounting for 250 cases and marijuana accounting for 148 cases. The highest number of tobacco, inhalants, and marijuana use cases were recorded in secondary schools in Suva and Nausori, while secondary schools in Cakaudrove topped the list for alcohol use. Meanwhile, kava consumption in primary schools topped the list for the number of drug cases recorded in primary schools around the country, accounting for 97 out of 219. According to the report, the use of tobacco and inhalants also continue to be used in primary schools accounting for 56 and 46 cases respectively. The report highlighted that majority of kava consumption and alcohol consumption cases were from primary schools in Nadroga/Navosa, while 75 per cent of the cases of tobacco use in primary schools were recorded in Cakaudrove. More than 50 per cent of inhalant use recorded in primary schools were recorded in schools from the Nausori district.