The Archbishop, Dr. Stephen Samuel Kaziimba Mugalu, has expressed concern over the young generation’s rate of drug and alcohol abuse.
Kaziimba made the remarks in Kampala during the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding to implement a drug abuse prevention programme in the Church of Uganda(COU) founded secondary schools.
“The ultimate objective of this partnership is to help youths in secondary schools, to avoid initiation into the use of drugs, or, if they have started already, to avoid developing disorders,” said Kaziimba.
This partnership with the Anglican Church that has over 13 million believers coincided with the visit of the Archbishop who inspected NDA’s quality control laboratory in Mulago.
Abiaz Rwamwiri, the NDA spokesperson, said that they have been deploying a multi-pronged approach including; creating and enhancing collaborations, physical and virtual engagements, use of Information Education and Communication tools and conduct of research to end drug and substance abuse especially among the youths.
“NDA has been working with the Church of Uganda especially with the Northern Uganda Diocese and this Memorandum of Understanding will widen her collaboration with COU that is affiliated with several other institutions including schools, universities and media platforms,” he said.
Rwamwiri said faith based institutions are well positioned to reach almost all Ugandans as most Ugandans have a religious inclination.
“The COU for a long time has exhibited a strong stand against drug and substance abuse and its teachings and this MOU will synergise NDA and the COU capabilities to reach many more Ugandans with the message of preventing drug and substance abuse,” he said.
Uganda signed and ratified the United Nations (UN) Narcotic Convention and Uganda has a narcotic law passed in April 2015 which criminalises substance abuse.
As the drug regulator, NDA is committed to safeguarding the appropriate use of drugs as a way of promoting and protecting healthcare as emphasized by the National Drug Policy and Authority Act Cap 2000.