National plan a stumbling block

2011-05-28 14:54

Government’s National Drug Master Plan was a stumbling block to fight drug addiction in Cape Town, locals have said.

Residents feel that a lack of funding and the fact that the City of Cape Town has formed a single team, the City of Cape Town Drug Action Committee, has hampered their fight against substance abuse.

Jonathan Jonkers, the chairperson of the Mitchells Plain Local Drug Action Committee, said: “Before the city took over the substance abuse programme two years ago, there were 16 local drug action committees spread across the Western Cape.

“Since the takeover, however, 15 of these have died out, with only the Mitchells Plain branch still in existence.”

But Letitia Bosch, the city’s substance abuse coordinator, dismissed these claims.

She said: “According to the National Drug Master Plan, each municipality must set up a single drug action committee. It was based on this legislation that the city drew up its plan.”

During a recent fact-finding visit to Mitchells Plain, social development minister Bathabile Dlamini found that funding for drug-fighting NGOs had virtually dried up.

Dlamini’s spokesperson, Abram Phahlamohlaka, said: “The minister was greatly concerned about this and has promised to take up the issue with the MEC for social development.”

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