FEATURE: Where are seized ‘marijuana’ loots kept; burnt, legally exported or used?
“There’s a natural mystic blowing through the air
If you listen carefully now you will hear…
… though I ‘tried’ to find the answers
To all the questions ‘we’ ask,
though I know it’s impossible…
…’But’ one and all got to face reality now…”
Formed in 1993 under the Interior Ministry; the Narcotic Control Board is aimed at formulating and enforcing narcotics laws in Ghana and as well as prevent the use, import and export of sedative products including Cocaine and Marijuana (weed).
With its 3 main functions, supervised by the Interior Ministry; NACOB is responsible for enforcement and controlling of narcotic control laws, education and prevention of use of such products and treatment, rehabilitation and social re-integration of narcotics addicts.
And indeed the above mission details, dubbed from the Wikipedae page (last edited on August 12, 2014 @ 9:43pm by Moshe s2002) of the Ghana Narcotic Control Board seem less accomplished due to the fact that much focus is paid to the cocaine aspect of the narcotics common in Ghana and rather less attention given to marijuana which is among the two narcotic substances is way popular than the other.
This analysis is based on the institution’s commendation received in 2004 from the Customs office in UK for seizing 42kg of cocaine concealed in sacks of rice imported from Guyana at the Tema Port in two 20-suit containers in September 2003. And also the burning of 167kg of seized cocaine at Teshie Shooting Range to avoid redistribution in Accra in June 2010; probably that was the era that cocaine was on high demand in Ghana.
But then again, reasoning right; how possible can powders (among other forms of cocaine) and its wrappers be burnt to ashes? Probably its wrappers melt along with the substances and what form of ashes comes out after the burning; black or brown coloured ashes?
Now analyzing the massive seizure of the ‘leafy’ substances and checking records none of the seized packages from couriers has neither been announced burnt nor any useful information on what the seized bulky parceled substances were used for or kept and for what reasons aside the few burnt weed farms.
Unlike cocaine which is less common in the Ghanaian society (but popular in the dark side of the country); massive uproars are made when marijuana dealers are taken into custody with the substances ‘presumably’ undergoing forensic examinations. And these culprits (dealers) are heavily incarcerated up to 10years.
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Again, what happens to the weeds intercepted by the law enforcers after its dealers has been imprisoned to years without bail while someone who has embezzled so much state funds can be bailed?
Also, if the Deputy Minister of Interior, Hon. James Agalga is requesting for adequate resources to assist NACOB carry out its responsibilities effectively; is that a clue to prove that no or less forensic tests has ever been carried out on majority of narcotics cases in the country?
The major focus on enquiring on what is done with seized slabs of weed is that it’s quite baffling as – if the powdered form of sedative (cocaine) after being seized was ‘proudly’ announced to have been burnt; then why can’t the public be updated or educated on what is done with seized weed loots? Or probably, the seized weed parcels are sold to manufacturing companies that uses weed as major components in their products like popular Jeba Hair Pomade, among others?
Are these companies not committing criminal offenses using the ‘illegal’ substances to produce their products onto the market? If No, then why not ask the couriers where and for what reasons are they importing or transporting the weed parcels to? or there’s some form of mutual agreement between the companies and the NACOB?
And/or could it be that the warehouse where the parcels of weed are kept is choked hence, a major reason why Executive Secretary, Yaw Akrasi Sarpong in the last two years called for a national debate on the legalization of the substance?
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Sunday, January 17, 2016, marked 3 months when amalarbieafrica.com contacted the office of the NACOB Boss to address the subject and following official routine, his PRO was the meditator and according to him, he carried out instructions from the ‘top’ to forward the questionnaire to the management (right department) to address the subject.
Unfortunately, there has been no response from the ‘appropriate’ office of NACOB on the subject matter.
Editor’s Note: More soon…