High drug use among Moulmein university students, says drugs task force leader

September 23, 2015

DSCN6334A section leader from a Moulmein anti-drugs task force has pointed to high drug use among students at Moulmein University.

Nai Htan Ma Nar, deputy commander of the task force, discussed his experiences during a public lecture for the United Nationalities Youth Forum (UNYF), held on September 19 at Dar Du Mar Lar monastery in the Say Cho quarter of Moulmein city.

At the lecture, attended by around 50 young people from across Mon State, Nai Htan Ma Nar pointed to a high prevalence of drug use among Moulmein University students. He explained, “On September 18 we arrested six students in Myin Thar Yar [a city quarter of Moulmein that is close to the university] who had used drugs. According to a student in this group, almost all of the male students in Moulmein University, two in three, have experienced drug use”.

In his lecture, Nai Htan Ma Nar discussed different kinds of drugs available in Burma, levels of drug production, symptoms shown by drug users, disadvantages of drug use and possible ways of protecting youth against drug addiction.

According to Nai Htan Ma Nar, many students have experimented recently with a drug called “WY”, a popular type of methamphetamine. He detailed, “In [Burma], people began to know about the WY drug in 1996, but now it has spread across almost all of the country. We can’t imagine how it will spread in the future”.

He detailed strategies in place to combat drug use, including biannual discussions at Moulmein University on the issue, specialized hospital units for drug addicts and CBO anti-drug programmes.

At the end of his lecture, Nai Htan Ma Nar answered questions from youth forum participants.

Finally, he concluded, “Everybody should take notice of this drug problem and try to preserve themselves”.

Nationally, Burma is the second largest producer of opium in the world and also produces a considerable quota of Southeast Asia’s methamphetamines. While many of these drugs are produced for export, drug use remains a significant issue throughout the country.

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