By: T’soloane Mohlomi

Maseru aggrieved women recently took a stand and marched against the scourge of drug trafficking and drug abuse which seems to have grappled the country in recent times.

The march commenced from and ended at the Maseru Central Park where a petition was handed over to the Commissioner of Police Holomo Molibeli. Central to their pleas was that Police take and treat the issue of drug trafficking and drug cartels  very seriously, they urged the police to better inspect  themselves as some Police officers were fingered as being complicit in aiding and abetting drugs and some of these horrific trafficking activities.

Most of the women were mothers who had experienced acts of drug abuse at first hand and are mostly victims of those acts which were implicated by their children or those close to them who were grappling with drug abuse. The women carried placards bearing messages like “End drug abuse” and drug lords please have mercy on us.”  

When accepting the petition Commissioner of Police Holomo Molibeli flanked by Deputy Police Commissioner Marake and other members of the Police force said they as Police had heard the cries of the women and the nation in general with regard to the heinous acts drug abuse and drug trafficking which are destroying people’s lives especially the youth of the country.

Commissioner Molibeli said sympathised with the women as they as police officers themselves were also parents. He said they were going to continue to do what was in their power to see to it that these issue and reports abated, however saying that with regards to ensuring that drug traffickers went to jail for a long time they were also still challenged as they only acted on laws that existed which regulated such infringements.

The Commissioner said that the laws of the Kingdom of Lesotho were disappointing as people accused of selling illegal drugs to the public when arrested would only receive a small fine for their crimes amounting to just M20 in order to avoid doing some jail time.

“When accepting this letter we undoubtedly understood that the opinions and pleas drafted in the petition come from sore hearts and our job is to solve this issues but we cannot do it all by ourselves without your help. I can assure you that we are not just police officers but we are parents too and these issues bother us too.

“With your cooperation we will do all in our power to end these horrific acts, in one year in particular If my memory serves me well, your children when going to study at the state library would encounter individuals who would tempt them to buy muffins laced with marijuana known as ‘Dope cakes’ we once arrested a man in relation to those issues.

“If you closely examine this issue of drug abuse as a Lesotho policeman and as part of the Interpol family also taking a look at how other countries condemn and seriously treat this issues where punishments are very harsh, in contrast here in Lesotho you will notice that you as the public, as you are indeed the ones who inspire the parliament to create these laws you will discover that most of these perpetrators are foreign nationals. These individuals wouldn’t dare commit those crimes in their own countries but continue to do them here. So as the Police only enforce existing laws you will find that we arrest these criminals only for them to be released on as little as M20 bail only.

“So it is only with you ladies and through these commendable efforts that these outdated laws can be amended. By so doing you are indeed not only protecting your children but ours as well, “the Police Commissioner said.

Member of Parliament Ms. Mamello Phooko who was one of the participants in the march said she stays in Khubetsoana where a drug known as “crystal meth” was wreaking havoc, she expressed that she was distraught over the acts that abusers do just to get high. Ms. Phooko said this matter needed urgent address as drugs had destroyed many lives and continue to do so if authorities do not take the matter seriously.

‘Mamphana ‘Molotsi one aggrieved mother who was a victim of an attempted murder by her own son, who stabbed her ten times after forcibly demanding money to pay a loan taken from a drug lord whom he owed said the state of drugs in Lesotho has now reached a devastating stage as she nearly succumbed to death at the hands of her own child who was addicted to illegal drugs.