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THE latest massive drug bust in Kuwait, during which Customs officials seized more than 1.3 million narcotic pills, is deeply alarming and unsettling. It is a source of fear and panic for our young ones because this drug haul was packed in a manner resembling ‘sweets’ or ‘medicinal pills’. Some of those concerned with drug addicts and hallucination pills estimated the number of addicts among Kuwaitis at 103,000.
The vigilant Customs authority personnel seizing these narcotics, which were inside ketchup gallons, is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of what is smuggled successfully into the country. This means the quantity of drugs smuggled into the market and land into the hands of our youths is three times more than the recent drug bust.
Therefore, it is necessary for the concerned experts and officials in both the executive and legislative authorities to seriously embark on a search for solutions and alternatives to these fatal toxins banned by every law in this world. They should take a firm grip on this grave isssue. It is a disaster and another face of corruption which has afflicted our community in a wider scale.
This is in addition to widespread corruption everywhere in terms of bribery, forged academic and nationality certificates, and spread of violence among youths. This issue could be attributed mainly to consumption of these toxins.
A few days ago, I met the Director General of Kuwait Customs Directorate Jamal Al-Jalawi. We frankly talked about an issue which many fear to talk about due to the intellectual terrorism that the extremists and fanatics in this society have been practicing for years on anyone whose opinion differs from theirs.
My question for Director General Al-Jalawi was about their (Customs) continuous environmental pollution when they ‘dispose’ huge stocks of alcohol which the Customs seizes from time to time. Why not sell them the way the seized cigarettes are sold? Of course, the answer is clear and I knew it – Article 206 of the Penal Code which prohibits trading in intoxicants.
This type of law exists only in our country and two or three other countries in the entire world. I told him it is possible to sell the massive haul of alcohol which has not been touched by our friendly countries that allow alcohol instead of destroying them and drenching our soil with alcohol and bottles. He praised my opinion although he was quick to point out the prohibition of benefiting from selling substances which are deemed forbidden. “By overlooking the law issued more than 10 decades ago, you can donate the financial returns to non-fanatic charitable organizations that globally renowned in their philanthropic work, not like those operating for the sake of showing off,” I noted.
To be specific, what I meant was to donate the financial returns to organizations such as the ‘Red Crescent.’ A few days later, I met Chairperson of Kuwait Red Crescent Society Dr Hilal Al-Sayer. I told him about my conversation with the Customs director general. Al-Sayer laughed and said the society has no objection, in principle, to using that money in philanthropic work instead of polluting our environment with it.
I could not stop thinking which of the two is more harmful for our youths and people in this country. Is it the narcotic and hallucination pills banned by the entire world, or alcoholic drinks banned in three countries at most, and on top of the list are our nation and the decisive law? Despite the existence of the superior Sharia principle: “Necessity knows no law,” a harmful issue is eliminated by a less harmful issue.
By Ali Ahmed Al-Baghli Former Minister of Oil