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Drug Abuse Among The Youth Has Reached Crisis Level

Munashe Dube (center), 22, smokes a cigarette he dipped in adhesive thinners while his friends Tinashe Katewe, 15, and Thembinkosi Siziba, 23, wait their turn to smoke in Bulawayo’s City Centre. Dube has been homeless for 7 years. (Linda Chinobva, GPJ Zimbabwe)
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Munashe Dube (center), 22, smokes a cigarette he dipped in adhesive thinners while his friends Tinashe Katewe, 15, and Thembinkosi Siziba, 23, wait their turn to smoke in Bulawayo’s City Centre. Dube has been homeless for 7 years. (Linda Chinobva, GPJ Zimbabwe)

By Staff Reporter

Youths in Harare’s density suburbs have attributed the increase of drug peddling ‘bases’ which have contributed to the distribution of illegal drugs to inadequate employment opportunities.

These drug-peddling bases are a common feature in areas such as Mbare, Highfield and Southlea Park and that is where youths access substances including Marijuana, Bron Clear and Chrystal meth.

“It appears that these drug dealers have the blessings of some well-connected political personalities and the gangsters managing the bases are untouchable,” a youth identified as Bla Fidza told Slymedianews.

“They are actually responsible for the rot affecting our societies, especially with the advent of new substances such as Chrystal meth which is known as mutoriro.”

Residents in these areas have accused some police officers operating in these zones of having been paid off by owners of these bases to turn a blind eye.

“You may get to wonder why these drug dealers are not being arrested: how can they the police bite the same fingers that feed them?” said Southlea Park resident Mike Maposa.

“In actual fact, the drug peddling bases have become the cash-cows for the police officers as they supplement to the meagre monthly salaries these cops get.”

Youths have said the surge in drug abuse was as a result of high levels of unemployment as most had resorted to substance abuse to pass time.

“What do you expect from the youths who have nowhere to work?” said Leonard Mhaka from Mbare.

“There is absolutely nowhere the youths can go because after completing their high school hence the only place to go is in the streets where drugs of all sorts are readily available.”

Robert Tapfumaneyi

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