Fighting drug menace demands national will and ownership

JD Lovrenciear

Modified 4 Sep 2019, 11:18 am

LETTER | The largely swept under the carpet truth is, drug smuggling and addiction have swelled in the country to an alarming degree.

The occasional news reports on police hauls and drug busting may appear like we are winning the war.

But as our new Inspector-General of Police Abdul Hamid Bador said of recent in July, the country’s drug problem was worsening (FMT, Sept 4, 2019).

He warned, "Malaysia could become a major source of narcotics".

“If we do not check (this) now, we could lead the way just like Colombia,” he said.

How many NGOs, civil society groups, activists and religious organisations took this revelation to task?

The growing number of unemployed youths and businesspersons who are bent on reaping huge, unaccounted profits coupled with our 100 percent shortage of law enforcers has continued to give a cover for the drug menace to flourish.

State governments are unwilling to own up to reality in the respective states where they hold power.

Instead, often they use religion and race rage as the painted canvas to bury the ugly reality.

Meanwhile, our lawmakers are too busy trying to reach the 2020 goal post in attempts to stay within popular power fencing.

Many of our politicians are announcing or peddling all kinds of mantras promising development and progress.

Likewise, those on the opposition are clamouring with allegations and cover-ups to regain political power.

In essence, we have been losing this war on drugs as Malaysia remains a safe haven for the transit of drugs.

And the drug addicts and smugglers are swelling by the decades.

Yes, becoming a Columbia is not far fetched.

And certainly we do not have a Duterte-styled leadership either to put up a desperate fight against the drug menace.

Those who parade as guardians of national sovereignty and beat drums claiming certain Malaysian political parties are threatening and undermining race, religion and royalty are truly traitors.

They need to step out from their protected power bases or cloisters of comfort and acknowledge that the real enemies of the state are drug traders and addicts.

We need to openly admit the true state of the problem.

We need all segments of society to join hands to fight this disaster.

We need to commit more of our national wealth and budget to prioritise a war on drugs.

You cannot sustain a developed or developing nation status with mortar and money alone. You need to have a citizenry that is free of the drug menace.

Are our people and the government ready? 

The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.

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