Akufo-Addo Calls for Science-Based Drug Policies at World Drug Day Event - Onlinetimesgh

Akufo-Addo Calls for Science-Based Drug Policies at World Drug Day Event

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has called for the need for drug policies rooted in scientific research, human rights, and compassion during the 2024 International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking in Accra.

“for drug policies to be effective, must be based on scientific research, respect for human rights, compassion, and a deep understanding of the social, economic, and health implications of drug use.”

This statement was delivered at the 2024 International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, also known as World Drug Day, in Accra, under the theme “The Evidence is Clear: Invest in Prevention.”

Speaking through Interior Minister Henry Quartey, the President highlighted the complex global socio-economic factors driving drug trafficking and abuse. He noted that “the dimensions and impact of drug trafficking were intensive, extensive and complex.”

Akufo-Addo further added that the theme “sought to draw the world’s attention to the need to intensify and direct all efforts to prevent trafficking in and abuse of illicit drugs, which had brought an untold devastating health condition to millions of people worldwide.”

Citing the report, the President stated, “Fewer than 20 percent of people with drug use disorders are in treatment, and access is highly unequal.” He acknowledged Ghana’s challenges with drug trafficking and abuse but praised recent policy reforms, including the Narcotics Control Commission Act of 2020.

Kenneth Adu-Amanfoh, Director-General of the Narcotics Control Commission (NACOC), reported significant progress in drug awareness efforts. He stated, “Last year, the NACOC through its Demand Reduction Directorate, sensitized a total of 308,312 students across 1,322 institutions at all levels of education.” Adu-Amanfoh also announced plans to establish Drop-In Centers in regional capitals for individuals with substance use disorders.

The government reaffirmed its commitment to supporting NACOC and other security agencies. Akufo-Addo called on “all and sundry to lend support to the law enforcement agencies in the fight against the drug canker.”

This year’s World Drug Day event underscored Ghana’s shift towards a more holistic, science-based approach to drug prevention and treatment, reflecting a growing global trend in drug policy reform.

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