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General News of Sunday, 31 March 2019

Source: ghananewsagency.org

Sending wee smokers to jail is inhuman - MP

Mr James Agalga, the Ranking Member for the Select Committee on Defence and Interior, has described as inhuman the imprisonment of wee smokers, who have become addicted to the substance.

The Member of Parliament for Builsa North Constituency in an interview with GNA said such individuals are sick and require help from the State to cure them of their addiction.

He said if one becomes addicted, the issue of arresting the person and incarcerating him or her would not solve the problem.

Mr Agalga said imprisoning addicts rather worsens their situation and “evidence shows that those, who are incarcerated tend to smoke even more upon their release because they are addicted."

He said "they are sick and even whiles in prison they try to find ways and means of getting the substance to smoke. So, it is clear the arrest and prosecution of drug addicts is not the way to go”.

He has, therefore, urged parliament to hasten the passage of the Narcotics Control Commission Bill into law to decriminalize the use of Cannabis.

The Narcotic Control Commission Bill, (NCCB) 2015 when passed into law, will help Narcotic Control Board (NACOB) to properly combat illicit drugs in the country.

Meanwhile, Blakk Rasta, a Radio Presenter had also expressed disappointment at the way innocent Ghanaians sick of substance addiction were thrown into jail.

He said the situation undermines Ghana’s Human Rights record.