Communities no longer safe

Samantha Sumani

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THE community is supposed to be a safe place for its residents, however, many are living in fear of
drug addicts and the negative social impacts the scourge is bringing to Bindura communities.

A recent world drug report revealed that Zimbabwe is also affected, indicating that youths are
engaging more in heavy episodic use of drugs and substances and sadly the affected fall within the
productive age group of 18 to 35 years that should be occupied with nation-building but are
succumbing to drugs and criminal activities.

Some of the commonly used drugs in Zimbabwe are marijuana, broncleer and crystal meths, which is
known as guka makafela in the streets.

ZRP spokesperson for Mashonaland Central Province, inspector Milton Mundembe, said they
encouraged members of the public to report issues which have to do with drug abuse or to tip off
anonymously the addresses where these drugs are being sold.

We have been doing campaigns, engaging with traditional leaders, visiting schools and talking to
parents in trying to reduce the issues of drug and substance abuse, he said.

Sadly, some parents do not co-operate as they protect their children by not reporting the issues of
drug abuse.

Drug and substance abuse is characterised by a destructive use of illegal drug or medication and it
usually affects a persons brain or behaviour.

Drug users consume the substance in amounts or through methods that are harmful to themselves
or the people around them.

The issue of drugs has been going on for a long time and it is very sad that these people who sell
the drugs are working with some in the police," said a resident from Chipadze, who did not want to
be identified.

Vimbai Jakachira (38), who is a resident of Chipadze said the places where drugs are sold were well
known to the law-enfo9rcement agencies but surprisingly the police appeared not to be doing much
about it.
“Pane kunonzi kuma1 in Chipadze and most people know they sell drugs there.

Ndiri mubereki and zvinorwadza kuona vana vachipandutswa nemadrugs kunyanya guka.
Vakawanda vacho ndovakupedzisira vakutibira because vanenge vachitsvaga mari dzekutenga
madrugs. Dai mapurisa vakwanisa kusunga vanotengesa vacho tobatsirika secommunity," Jakachira
said.

Crystal Meth is an addictive stimulant that strongly activates certain systems in the brain.

The risks of Crystal Meth are substantial. Meth is addictive, and a person can develop a tolerance
quickly, needing increasingly larger amounts to get high. In some cases, people using meth will
forego food and sleep and take more meth every few hours for days, “binging” until they run out of
the drug or become too disorganised to continue.

Chronic use of Meth can cause paranoia, hallucinations, repetitive behaviour such as compulsively
cleaning, grooming or disassembling and assembling objects, and delusions of parasites or insects
crawling under the skin that can lead to obsessive scratching to get rid of these imagined insects.

Long-term use, high dosages, or both can bring on psychosis often exhibited as violent, aggressive
behaviour. This violent, aggressive behaviour is usually coupled with extreme paranoia.
Methamphetamine use can also cause severe dental problems, convulsions, changes in brain
structure, strokes or heart attacks.

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