Côte d'Ivoire, like other West African countries, is faced with the problem of drug trafficking and drug abuse in the last decade. During the period from 1991 to 1999, about 7,500 drug cases were handled by the Ivorian judiciary, with an average of 830 cases per year. This figure increases the magnitude of the problem in Côte d’Ivoire, considering the negative effect of drug addiction on the economy, and social aspects of the country, for example: unemployment, crimes, physical and moral violence, robbery, compromised health and well-being, etc. This phenomenon is very alarming as it concerns both the adolescents and adults of the population. In order to have a clear picture of the evolution of drug abuse in Côte d'Ivoire, a survey was conducted, with the assistance of the national police in the department of drug and narcotics law enforcement, that provide us with the data from the period of 1999 to 2007. During this period, 7737 people were charged to court for drug offenses under Ivorian law on drugs, of which 58.5% were Ivoirians, while 41.5% were foreigners. Women constituted 6.51% and minors were 2.1%, in the people included, all belonging to different varieties of social and professional circle. Moreover, drug seizures continued to increase steadily in an alarming rate with Indian hemp or Cannabis sativa(15.076.7 kg) leading, followed by cocaine (26.9 kg) and finally heroin (85.8 g). To examine the impact this problem has on education, a survey was conducted in high schools in different communities of Abidjan. Our survey revealed that in schools, 8 to 29% of students were involved in drug abuse. Smoking of Indian hemp is the most common and occursbetween 17 and 20 years. The majority of these young consumers lives in the sub hub area of Abidjan and belonged to the middle class. It is therefore very important and urgent to strengthen the capacity of our law enforcement agents and the fight against drug trafficking in the country, and to develop awareness campaigns among youths in high schools and colleges to kick against drug abuse.
Key words: Hard drugs, addiction, smuggling, school survey.
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