Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) Deputy Public Relations Officer Kamufisa Manchishi has urged members of the public to utilise its free counselling service.
Mr. Manchishi says the Commission offers free counselling service to any member of the general public affected by alcohol and narcotic substance abuse.
“We offer free counselling services to the public and I am encouraging them to come through and access these services,” he said.
ZANIS reports Mr. Manchishi pointed out in an interview, yesterday, that DEC also works in conjunction with Chainama Hills Hospital, UTH Clinic 6, psychiatry units available in every general hospital and other private centers.
He emphasized that the general public should feel free to access these services as it is for their benefit.
“People should not be afraid of being arrested when they come to seek counselling for their alcohol or drug problem. We are here to help address problems like these because we understand that drug addiction is harmful to health,” he said.
He explained that the free counselling services have been made available in all DEC provincial centers in the country.
Over the past two years, there has been an increase in the number of people accessing the free counselling services.
“In the period 2015 to 2016, there has been an improvement in the number of clients accessing the free counselling services. In 2015 we had a total number of 415 clients and in 2016 we had a total number 610 clients, giving us a 47 per cent increase,” Mr. Manchinshi narrated.
He further revealed that in the period 2015 to 2016, the total number of clients was 1025 of which 993 were male and 32 were female most of whom are aged between 10 to 35 years old.
“We have anti-drug clubs in schools to help with sensitization because the most affected are the young people between the ages of 10 to 35 years and we have also trained peer educators to help with communicating anti-drug abuse messages,” he said.
Mr. Manchishi appealed to the public to take advantage of these services if they are afflicted with drug addiction and alcohol abuse or they can recommend the service to someone who is facing this problem.