Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane says drugs cannot be allowed to steal the hope of the youth.
He was speaking in eThekwini on Friday after leading a march by thousands of young South Africans to the Phoenix Police Station to commemorate Youth Day.
”Nothing destroys the life of a child like the effects of drug addiction. Nothing steals their youth faster than growing up in a culture of drug abuse‚ violence and gangsterism.
“The fight against the people who sell drugs in our communities – and who use children to sell them to other children – is a battle that can only be won if we all stand together and fight it on all fronts‚” Maimane said.
Criminals selling drugs to children must be investigated‚ arrested and prosecuted and those who got themselves caught up in drug abuse must be offered a way out through rehabilitation and reintegration into society‚ he added.
“We must warn those not yet trapped about the dangers of drugs and gangs.
“We must offer young people healthy alternatives to this lifestyle.
“And we must build a society and an economy where every child has hope for a better future – where there is so much more to look forward to than the quick thrills of drugs and crime.”