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Drug dealers 'targeting Indonesia's schools'

Anti-narcotics official warns students, parents and teachers to unite in face of growing threat

Updated: August 23, 2016 08:28 AM GMT
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Drug dealers 'targeting Indonesia's schools'

Faith groups, officials and teachers have banded together to resist a growing tide of drug abuse in which drug dealers are increasingly targeting schools.

The prevalence of drug abuse in Indonesia has got to such a stage that narcotics have penetrated almost all layers of society, even schools, said Heru Februanto, head of an anti-narcotics agency in Banten Province.

He was speaking to students, parents, teachers and local religious and government leaders at an Aug. 21 gathering in Tangerang, 30 kilometers west of Jakarta.

The gathering was part of a nationwide campaign to raise awareness of the drug problem schools and students are facing.

"Narcotics brings misery and ruins futures," Februanto said, calling for students, teachers and parents to unite in the face of a growing threat posed by drugs.

Achmad Badawi, rector of University of Muhammdiyah in Tangerang, said the fight against narcotics in schools needs the cooperation of all, because drugs are a big issue in the country.

"The problem is big and cannot be handled by only one institution," said Badawi.

According to Indonesia's national anti-narcotics agency, there were about 5.9 million drug users in 2015 and that drugs were killing more than 40 people every day.

The situation has become so acute it has prompted the government under President Joko Widodo to adopt a zero tolerance policy towards drug trafficking, with Widodo saying that all convicted drug traffickers will be executed

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