A local politician has chosen to take a more hard-line approach to the issue of drug trafficking; calling for not only tougher legislation, but also for peddlers and dealers to be charged with treason against the state. The call comes at a time when South Africa is facing a monumental challenge in combating gang violence and drug abuse post-Apartheid.
ANC politician, Zain Kaldine, said the call was based on the sentiments of UN secretary general, Ban Ki Moon, who claimed that drug traffickers were in violation of more than just drug laws. The UN leader said drug lord were “violating the human spirit, fueling radicalism, and robbing society of its peace”.
“I stand by and support this view, and say that drugs in itself is a weapon of mass destruction. The people that are dealing in this are terrorists, and they should be dealt with us such,” Kaldine told VOC Breakfast Beat.
He was particularly critical of South Africa’s current policy on drugs, describing it as insufficient and in need of review. He stressed the important of a stricter approach to such criminals, dealing with them in the same manner that the international community dealt with terrorists.
“They should hunt down these guys in a similar manner, and they should not be a part of our communities. I don’t think the laws are enough, and also I think the law as far as the drug users are concerned, should also be revisited,” he said.
In regards to drug users, Kaldine was under the view that such individuals need not be treated as criminals. This was under the assumption that drug abuse was a “disease, and not a crime”.
He also called on government to take stronger measures to try and tackle the issue at its roots, noting that South Africa was not nearly on par with many other countries when it came to drug trafficking prevention.
“I feel that if we want to improve this situation, then drug prevention and policies must be a long term investment,” he said. VOC (Mubeen Banderker)