Despite the efforts by the police to try and stem the filtration of drugs into the country, marijuana seems to be finding a safe passage into Francistown. The Sub Inspector at the Drugs and Narcotics Squad (DNS) in Francistown, Osefile Mmitseng, told the Sunday Standard in an interview that among all the drugs, marijuana continues to pose a major problem, entering the country through ungazetted points in the North East District, especially along the Ramokgwebana border and Matsiloje.
“For the past three years, Marijuana has really been a headache and the women are the major culprits in the trafficking of this drug,” he said.
He went on to mention that cocaine is also finding its way into Francistown but added that it seems to be from the South Region.
Responding to allegations that there are some culprits who send drugs through parcels in post offices to their clients, he said that they as DNS have not yet uncovered such incidents or cases.
“But what I can assure is that we are working around the clock with Interpol to try and find out the root of this rampant trafficking of drugs and working hard to find its source,” Mmitseng said.
He continued to say that although they have outreach programmes in which they reach out to the youth in schools and different areas in Francistown and the surrounding areas, the youth continue to be the ones who abuse drugs, especially marijuana.
Although he could not produce statistics at the time, he quashed reports that drug traffickers are mostly foreigners, saying that Batswana are normally the major culprits in the trafficking. He went on to add that sometime this year they seized large quantities of marijuana from a Motswana.
“This year in May we seized 369 kg from a Motswana culprit, which is the biggest in three years and most of the people that we arrest range from ages of 18 to 35,” he revealed.
However Mmitseng applauded Batswana for working hand in hand with the Police in the fight against the drug scourge, saying that they are very cooperative. He went on to add that one of the worrisome factors with regard to drugs, especially marijuana, is that students in Junior Secondary Schools and Senior Secondary schools have become a huge market for drug dealers.
“We normally get high cases of students who are caught with drugs in schools,” he said.
He added that they have been called a couple of times by school teachers to investigate some students with drugs especially marijuana.