President John Magufuli of Tanzania on Monday told security forces in the country to crack down drug trade and said no one should be spared, even if they are top politicians, their relatives or even his wife.
His new drive against drugs follows growing concerns tat East Africa is being used traffickers. While most Europe-bound Afghan heroin still goes through Iran and the Balkans, a spate of record-size hauls near Kenya and Tanzania has raised fears East Africa is seen as an easier route because of porous borders and weak maritime surveillance.
“In this war against narcotics, no one is too prominent to be arrested even if they are politicians, security officers, cabinet ministers or the child of a prominent person,” Magufuli told the heads of the defence and security forces at the presidential State House.
“Even if my wife, Janeth, is involved, she should be arrested.” he added.
Tanzanians have long complained that top officials or those with government connections have often been spared prosecution for corruption and other crimes.
Magufuli has sought to show even those in high office will be held accountable for criminal activity or poor performance. While praising the police chief for suspending 12 junior officers last week on suspicion of drugs trafficking, he however said the campaign must target the financiers and dealers, citing the case of one unnamed drugs trader whose case was taking too long to go through the courts.
“I know some leaders tried to defend him. But we must now start to jail these big drug dealers, instead of just dealing with the little people,” the president said.
Source: Citizen Digital & Linda Ikeji