PUTRAJAYA – Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi today called for the immediate implementation of more comprehensive measures to combat drug abuse which he described as a growing concern in society.
Ahmad Zahid, who is also Home Minister, said latest statistics showed that 56 per cent of all prisoners in the country were serving time for drug-related crimes and this phenomenon should be given serious attention by all quarters.
“It’s a pretty disturbing scenario. We cannot just leave it to the police and the National Anti-Drugs Agency to deal with the problem,” he said to reporters here.
Ahmad Zahid was asked to comment on a newspaper report today that drug abuse among Malaysians was not only not reducing but was taking on alarming proportions.
The daily quoted statistics of the Prisons Department showing that 56 per cent of all prisoners in the country had been convicted of drug-related offences, some 33,500 of the total 59,600 prisoners.
Ahmad Zahid said that besides undertaking enforcement against drug kingpins, traffickers and manufacturers through the Narcotics CID and arrests and rehabilitation through the National Anti-Drugs Agency, the government took a more holistic approach through other relevant agencies.
Collaboration was also forged with the Royal Customs Department and the Border Control Agency to prevent drugs from being smuggled into the country across the borders, he said.
Ahmad Zahid said cooperation was also established with the Chemistry Department and Forensics Department to determine the evidence pertinent to the enforcement.
“We also hope that society as a whole can help these agencies to ensure that drug abuse and distribution are eliminated,” he said. – BERNAMA