Lack of rule of law boosts poppy cultivation in Ghor

 Fri 21 Apr 2017

KABUL (SW): Authorities of Counter Narcotics and civil society activists have said despite the fact that Afghan Laws declare poppy cultivation a crime, so far security forces have not arrested anyone in Ghor.

According to these concerning activists the government has not taken any measure to curb poppy cultivation in the province.

Mohammad Yousuf Wakili, head provincial Counter Narcotics Directorate, talking to Salam Watandar said farmers in the province are emboldened by the lack of law enforcement and alternative crops to cultivate poppy in the villages near to the center of the districts. “We launched awareness campaigns against poppy cultivation and drug use in Ghor, but to no avail”, added Wakili.

The head of Ghor Counter Narcotics Directorate (CND) warned if poppy cultivation and drug smuggling is not stopped; more of the residents of the province will become addicted to drugs.

Civil society activists have also raised concerns over the rampant poppy cultivation and its impact on the society and claimed the government lacks the will to eliminate poppy cultivation. Timor Shah Ahmadi and Mohammad Hassan Hakimi, two of such civil society activists, claimed that governmental and international organization which are supposed to eliminate poppy cultivation in the province have not done anything to fight the menace.

Abdul Khatibi, provincial governor’s spokesman, said poverty and high unemployment rate are the main reasons behind farmers cultivating poppy in the province. “The provincial government is trying to find better alternative crops for poppy”, informed Khatibi.

According to statistics provided by Ghor’s CND there are at least 50 thousand drug addicts and the numbers are alarmingly increasing.