4000 ADEPR youth in Nyagatare conduct ‘Walk against Drugs’
The mass awareness exercise started with a ‘Walk against Drugs’ from Nyagatare ADEPR parish through Nyagatare town and back to the parish as the youth chanted against drug abuse holding placards and banners with message calling for collective responsibility to stamp out the vice that is rated high among the young generation.
Charlotte Musabyimana, Nyagatare District vice mayor in charge of social affairs, while speaking to the youth, commended them for the courage and noble action to fight drug abuse urging residents to “learn a lesson” from them.
“This defines what is required of the youth as future leaders. A healthy and responsible youth predicts a better future and today you set an example that other youth and Rwandans in general should emulate to build a community and generation that is free from drugs,” Musabyimana said.
She also called on residents to ensure body hygiene and sanitation in their homes as they refrain from domestic conflicts and report gender based violence in their communities.
“Gender based violence is a human rights violation that has physical, mental and psychological effects on the victim hence being barrier to civic, social, political and economic participation,” she said.
Musabyimana added that; “Rwandans chose to end any form of violence that targets individuals or groups on the basis of their gender, age or background. Therefore, as we seek for collective achievements as a nation, GBV, in all its manifestations, should not be tolerated. Let us join hands to make our country safer for all, including women and girls.”
Various speakers from Rwanda National Police (RNP) and Rwanda Defence Forces (RDF) also commended the youth and encouraged them to “remain focused.”
Inspector of Police (IP) Jean Claude Kaburabuza, the District Community Liaison Officer lectured the youth and residents on the common types of illicit drugs, their dangers and laws penalizing dealers and abusers.
Highlighting illicit gin – Kanyanga and Chief Waragi, and cannabis – as common drugs in Nyagatare, IP Kaburabuza said that they are illegal and punishable under articles 594, 595 and 596 of the Rwanda penal code.
Making, selling and use of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances attracts a prison sentence of up to five years and a fine of up to Rwf5 million under article 594 of the penal code.
Facilitating another person to use drugs attracts a penalty of up to three years in prison and a fine of Rwf500, 000 to Rwf5 million under article 595 while under article 596, inducing a child to use narcotic drugs is punishable with an imprisonment of between five and seven years.
Pastor Epaphrodite Rwayitare of ADEPR Nyagatare thanked security organs and the local leaders for the lectures given to youth saying that the message will contribute tremendously in building a better nation and better citizens.