Mon, 24 Jan 2000

Drugs rampant in SE Sulawesi

KENDARI, Southeast Sulawesi: Police here expressed concern of rampant drug abuse in the province on Saturday, saying it had affected all levels and ages in the community.

"Drug abuse is even prevalent among children," the Southeast Sulawesi Police chief, Col. Amir Iskandar, told Antara. He noted that the number of cases increased in the past three years.

In his speech read by chief of local police detectives, Lt. Col. R. Thibroni, Amir said there were only two drug cases in 1997, but the figure soared to 11 the following year and to 15 in 1999.

Throughout last year, local police confiscated 10,262 ecstasy pills, shabu-shabu (crystal metamphetamine) and other drugs.

Amir stressed the importance of education and thorough searches in airports and seaports to prevent the spread of drug abuse. (04)