KUALA LUMPUR: The police and the Education Ministry have identified 420 schools nationwide as high risk for serious drug abuse, said Deputy Home Minister Datuk Nur Jazlan Mohamed.
He said yesterday if the matter was not handled, it could become widespread.
“If the drug menace is nipped in the bud, we will be able to maintain our system and not have to resort to extreme policies,” he said after launching Cipta 2018 at Universiti Malaya.
Nur Jazlan, who is also Malaysian Drug Prevention Association (Pemadam) president, said random tests on 36,675 schoolchildren in 2015 found 1,475 positive for drugs.
Of those, 73% or 1,075 children were positive for amphetamine-type stimulants, while the rest were positive for cannabis-related drugs.
On drug abuse among students in tertiary institutions, Nur Jazlan said the number was negligible.
A screening of 11,000 students in public universities nationwide from January to June showed only 250 tested positive, while 158 of 4,000 students screened in private colleges and universities were also positive.
“One of the reasons they take drugs is to cope with examination pressure and to stay awake at night to study,” he said.
The Cipta 2018 campaign was launched by Pemadam to bring the association closer to youth groups through a competition to create a logo, slogan, songs and videos.
The competition, from Oct 25 to Dec 6, offers a grand prize of RM10,000. It is open to all Malaysians. More information are available at pemadam.org.my. — Bernama