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President Calls for Judicial Crackdown on Drugs

President Calls for Judicial Crackdown on Drugs

The Mozambican President today called on the judiciary to step up “repression” against drugs, emphasising that the consumption of illicit substances is having negative effects on people and the country’s economy.

“The judiciary can and must strengthen the crackdown on drug trafficking, through the application of the law and the training of all those involved in the process,” said Filipe Nyusi.

The Mozambican head of state was speaking during the inauguration of the new provincial court building in Niassa, in the north of the country.

By acting more effectively, the courts can persuade society to adopt behavioural norms that avoid resorting to drugs, he continued.

The courts should also “strengthen liaison with other strategic institutions in the prevention and fight against drugs and encourage scientific research by organisations aimed at defining and understanding criminal and health problems related to drug use”, he added.

Filipe Nyusi said that coordinated actions could stop more young people from accessing illicit substances.

“In our country, consumption is most significant among men between the ages of 21 and 30, the youth,” emphasised Filipe Nyusi, highlighting the negative effects of drugs on health and the economy.

To prevent and combat drugs, he added, Mozambique has implemented a national strategy, created a coordination office between institutions linked to the area and has intensified international cooperation actions, including with the United Nations.

“Several [drug] seizures have been made in different parts of the country,” as a result of actions to combat illicit substances, he emphasised.

More than 2.5 tonnes of cocaine, heroin and cannabis were seized in Mozambique in 2023, an increase on 2022, valued at 1.816 million euros, according to a report by the Public Prosecutor’s Office consulted by Lusa this month.

The annual report by the Central Office for Preventing and Combating Drugs states that “there was a considerable increase in the number of arrests for international drug trafficking” in 2023 and that “traffickers have continued to seek to use the country to transit drugs to different parts of the world”.

It points out that cannabis, with 1,823 kilograms seized in the whole year (1,542 kilograms in 2022), continues to be the most trafficked drug, followed by heroin, with 600 kilograms (154.6 kilograms in 2022), and cocaine, with 78.5 kilograms (36.3 kilograms in 2022).

The report values the seizure of these three main drugs alone at a market value of more than 126.5 billion meticals (1,816 million euros).

“The city of Maputo and the provinces of Manica and Sofala are the ones that have seen the greatest demand for psychiatric and mental health services from consumers of psychoactive substances. However, the profile of patients with mental and behavioural disorders due to the use of psychoactive substances in the country continues to be mostly made up of male patients aged between 21 and 30,” reads the report, sent to Parliament.

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In connection with drug use and trafficking, 923 people, 64 of them women, were arrested by the Mozambican police in 2023, a figure that represents a slight reduction on the previous year, with 306 in pre-trial detention and 617 convicted.



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