He citedreports that South Dayi District has been declared a major haven for marijuana cultivation in the country and argued that it is because the youth have no other alternative that is why they have turned tothe illegal but attractive and very lucrative trade of marijuana to earn a living.
Torgbui Adza Wiah Kwesi II’s position on joblessness is not in doubt as the World Bank in its latest report on jobs in Ghana revealed that about 48%of the youth in the country, who are between 15 and 24 years, do not have jobs.It recommended that government must work towards equipping the youth with relevant skills through the educational system.
The Ghana Living Standards Survey for the year 2012/2013 also estimates that 250,000 young men and women enter the Ghanaian labour market every year with only 2% absorbed in the formal sector whilst the 98% seek employment in the informal sector or remain unemployed.
Furthermore, Torgbui Kwesi II’s observation that the South Dayi District was becoming a haven for marijuana cultivation is supported by the Narcotics Control Board (NACOB), which has ranked the Volta Region as the leader in marijuana use and cultivation in the country.
NACOB says its research indicates a large number of the youth in the Volta Region have taken to cultivating marijuana, also known as wee. It explained that ready market for the narcotic substance and its value appears to be the motivating factor.
‘Wee’continues to be the most widely trafficked and abused drug in the West Africa sub-region, including Ghana.The annual prevalence rate for cannabis abuse, among the population, aged between 14 and 64 years,is between 5 and 10% and this is among the highest in the world.
The increasing spate of ‘wee’ bust in large quantities in different parts of the country is raising concern among Ghanaians. Hardly a week passes by without one story, which is ‘wee’-related.
‘Wee’ smoking among the youth in Ghana is on the increase despite the fact that it is a banned substance. And we shudder to think what would happen if the substance was legalized.
Again, there is scientific/documentary evidence which points to the fact that ‘wee’ smoking comes with attendant problems, including some users becoming insane.
It also appears the authorities are losing the battle against the trade/consumption of the illicit drug in Ghana and the earlier some drastic measures were taken to tackle the problem the better it would be for us all.
There can be no foot-dragging on this matter. The time to act is now!