By Amie Sanneh
Students of Abuko Upper Basic School were yesterday sensitized on Illicit Drugs and Drug Trafficking, at a seminar held at the school hall in Abuko. The seminar was organized by the Junior Education Service in partnership with the Maths and Science Club of Abuko Upper Basic School.
Tamsir Jallow, President of the Junior Education Service (JES), dealt with youth perspective on illicit drugs and drug trafficking. Jallow said drug is associated with criminality; that it can cause domestic violence, assault, mental illness amongst others. Mr. Jallow said students who take illicit drugs, believe that its use can help them pass their examinations. “It has nothing to do with exams but rather damages their health. It changes one’s attitude and behavior,” he said. The JES president added that it can change one’s life and make the individual a different person in the community. He advised students to do everything possible to stop drug abuse as it makes them commit crimes and damages their health.
Samuel Mendy, a youth activist from the Youth Empowerment Network, spoke on the health implication of illicit drugs and drug trafficking. He highlighted some of the root causes of drug abuse such as lack of parental care or poor upbringing, which can lead to the destruction of the child; that wrong information, making bad decisions or choices can also lead children to engage in drugs. Mr. Mendy noted that some students cannot do anything without using drugs. He warned that tobacco destroys health and that if they want to excel in life, they should be in the right environment and make the right decision.
The Coordinator of the Maths and Sciences club of Abuko Upper Basic School Mr. Amadou Jallow, said the seminar helps students understand what drug is; that the students have learnt from it and know the dangers and how they will avoid it. He described the seminar as a rare opportunity, thus urging students to make the best use of it. Mr. Jallow advised students to focus on their education and not to be badly influenced by their peers.
A member of JES, Amadou Jallow, said the message sent across is clear that drugs affect their health and wellbeing; that as far as life is concerned, they should do things according to law; that students can contribute meaningfully in life if they stay away from drugs.
The President of the Maths and Science club Tida Kamateh, said the dangerous chemical composition of drugs, can affect the body in many ways and that when it enters the brain, it can change its performance. She highlighted the various methods of drug usage such as through injection and inhalation.
The seminar was characterized with drama plays and poems recitations from the Maths and Science Drama Group and the UNESCO Club respectively.