Sassa’s anti-drug drive in full blast

2017-11-30 06:01
Social Development minister Bathabile Dlamini kicked off the departments anti substance abuse campaign and also donated to local organisations such as Imbasa Primary School. PHOTO: Mandla Mahashe

Social Development minister Bathabile Dlamini kicked off the departments anti substance abuse campaign and also donated to local organisations such as Imbasa Primary School. PHOTO: Mandla Mahashe

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Violent crime, rape and gangsterism in the Nyanga area has prompted the department of social development to kick off its festive season’s anti-substance and alcohol abuse campaign.

On Thursday 23 November Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini told the community that the aim of the campaign was to create awareness and education amongst communities; to promote a drug free society and minimise the negative effects of alcohol and substance abuse on individuals and families.

“This is a result of a visit by the president earlier in the year where residents raise key issues around poverty, crime and substance abuse.

So today we are here to start this campaign. We are trying to discourage people from taking alcohol and drugs,” she said.

Social Development held dialogue in Nyanga and established that people are living in fear as a result of the high prevalence of violent crimes such as murder, rape and gangsterism.

According to the South African Police Service (SAPS) statistics, Nyanga reported 2 304 drug-related crimes and 186 people were arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs.

“We also know that people often don’t report cases as they fear repercussions. So we are starting a relationship with local stake holders such as the police and the community organisations because if we join forces we can effectively fight crime and abuse”, said Dlamini.

Nyanga Cluster Commander Major General Dyantyi called on the community to work with the police to eradicated crime.

“We will never win the fight against crime if we as the SAPS work alone, so it is crucial that the community works with us.

We need the community and the leadership to join us, that is why we also work hand-in-hand with social development in this initiative, but we also have our own interventions,” said Dyantjie.

Dyantyi added that they will tighten their leash on unlicensed shebeens as they believe it is where criminals gather and create a violent environment.

Dlamini handed over food parcels and school uniforms to pupils at the local primary school, Imbasa, including toiletry bags and stationery.

She also told grant beneficiaries not to worry about payments as government was working towards a lasting solution.

“The department has signed an agreement with the SA Post Office. Even though the SASSA cards expire at the end of December, the date has been extended to allow beneficiaries to access their grants,” said Dlamini.

“We have extended the use of the card. And then everyone will wait until we say we are no longer going to use the card. But for now everyone is going to use SASSA card.

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